You might recall me writing in a blog post last year that pineapples have become something of a standing joke in our household. That’s because my other half constantly craves them and wants to buy one every time we go to the markets. I’m always trying to remind him how disappointed we generally are with Australian pineapples. Although they look very tempting, so often they fail to deliver: they’re either under-ripe or over-ripe, and often they are just too sour for my liking. It’s rare to find pineapples as sweet as the ones we’ve enjoyed in Asia and the Pacific.
All of which makes the recipe here particularly attractive, because you can get away with the pineapple being not quite sweet enough. You’ll need to use sugar to make both the crisps and the sorbet, and the end result is this ridiculously easy and impressive dessert, featured in Luca’s Seasonal Journey.
The magic of seasonal eating
Written by Milan-born chef Luca Ciano and published by New Holland, Luca’s Seasonal Journey is a truly beautiful book that celebrates the magic of seasonal eating. Ciano, who worked in Italy and London before coming to Australia, emphasises that by buying food when it is in season, you can eat more cheaply and enjoy greater flavour. (To which I’d add that food allowed to ripen naturally has superior flavour to food that is picked early for a supermarket shelf life.)
Every recipe in Luca’s Seasonal Journey pays homage to the season it is listed under. Some of the most tempting recipes are for cakes and desserts, like this one. Enjoy!
PINEAPPLE SORBET WITH PINEAPPLE CRISPS
12 round pineapple slices, 1⁄3 cm (1⁄8 in)
250 ml (8 fl oz) water
100g (3½ oz) superfine (caster) sugar
½ large pineapple, peeled and roughly chopped
1 tablespoon lemon juice
75 g (1½ oz) superfine (caster) sugar
To make pineapple crisps, heat oven to 90°C (190°F). Bring water to the boil in a saucepan. Add sugar and stir until dissolved. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Soak the pineapple slices in the syrup, Remove from syrup and arrange on baking paper on an oven tray, leaving space between them. Dry in the oven for 3 to 4 hours. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
Meanwhile, add pineapple, sugar and lemon juice to a blender and mix until smooth.
Place into an ice-cream machine and follow manufacturer’s instructions or simply place the liquid into a tray and the place in the freezer.
Stir the mix every 5–10 minutes with a whisk — you need to break the mix and stir. Keep doing this process until an almost solid texture is formed. Keep in the freezer.
Serve with the pineapple crisps.
Recipe and images from Luca’s Seasonal Journey. By Luca Ciano. Published by New Holland and reproduced with permission of New Holland.