Lemon Sherbet

Lemon Sherbet

This lemon sherbet (sher-bit) has a great story behind it.

In the fall of 2014 we were at Courtney and John’s home in Charlotte, North Carolina, where John’s mom, Barbara, was guiding me through her famous shrimp and grits recipe. The conversation eventually turned to her mother, Helen, and her lemon sherbet. To my delight, she offered to share the recipe with me.

Later, Helen told Barbara that the sherbet actually goes back a full four generations, originating from Barbara’s grandmother on her father’s side! What a treasure.

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Time: 2hr 0mins
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup (7 ounces) granulated or powdered sugar
  • ½ cup lemon juice (juice from about 1 pound of lemons)
  • ⅛ ounce grated lemon rind (1 teaspoon firmly packed)
Place all in a 1-quart jar; cap tightly and shake to combine. Refrigerate at least 1 hour to allow sugar to dissolve.

Tip: Cut lemons in half at their equators, place cut sides down and quarter. Juice with a citrus squeezer held over a mesh strainer to catch seeds.
Dissolving sugar crystals now decreases undesirable ice crystal formation later during the freezing process. Grated lemon rind is essential for robust flavor.
  Follow ice cream maker’s instructions, freezing until the mixture is quite thick (15-20 minutes). Quickly transfer to a 1-pint storage container with a stiff silicone spatula or bamboo spoon, cap tightly and freeze promptly until firm (10-12 hours). The texture is best if served within 1 week. Silicone/bamboo is less heat conductive than metal utensils.