4.24.12 Bless You

Juice 790 xxx
photos by gluttonforlife
Remember "Singles," Cameron Crowe's 1992 film about young love and indie music in Seattle? No? I'm not surprised. It really wasn't that good. But I'll never forget how Bridget Fonda's character, who was hopelessly in love with Matt Dillon's indifferent rocker, waited in vain for him to say "Bless you" every time she sneezed. In my family we always said "Salud" whenever someone sneezed. To not say it was unthinkable. Like a jinx. What with spring allergies kicking in and everyone getting those changing-season colds, there's lots of sneezing going on nowadays. If you've got a scratchy throat, runny nose or just a general malaise, try this therapeutic treat. It's a sorbet—from Jeni's, of course—packed with vitamin C, soothing honey and a fiery combination of ginger, bourbon and cayenne. It feels restorative and it will definitely clear a few things right up.
Oranges 790 xxx
back to the rind
The recipe calls for fresh orange and lemon juices. I had Cara Cara and blood oranges on hand, and they imparted a gorgeous coral color to the final sorbet. You could definitely get creative with the citrus here.
Ginger 790 xxx
so grate
My friend Tomo brought many treats back from her recent trip to Japan, including this delicate but strong bamboo brush, ideal for flicking ginger off your grater. I recently picked up some excellent ginger-related tips from this video, and now I always keep a piece in my freezer. Jeni's recipe calls for powdered ginger, but I used fresh, finely grated. I'm sure this made my sorbet even spicier than hers. What can I say? I have Latin blood.
Cayenne 790 xxx
hot stuff
I use cayenne a lot in my cooking. Just a pinch adds that certain yo no se que (that's Spanish for je ne sais quoi) to everything from scrambled eggs, salad dressing and granola to chocolate meringue cookies and tequila cocktails.
Sorbet 790 xxx
get the scoop
I didn't have the liquid pectin called for and the sorbet seemed fine without it, but I've learned that Jeni's recipes are perfectly calibrated to create the best textures, so pick some up if you can. There's something irresistible about the way this sorbet goes down icy-cool yet spicy-hot. I prescribe it for whatever ails you.

Influenza Rx Sorbet

from Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams at Home
makes 1 generous quart
  • — 2 cups fresh orange juice (from 5-6 oranges)
  • — 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice (from about 2 lemons)
  • — 2/3 cup sugar
  • — 1/3 cup honey (preferably good raw honey)
  • — 1/4 teaspoon powdered ginger
  • — One 3-ounce packet liquid pectin
  • — 2-4 tablespoons Maker's Mark bourbon (optional)

Combine the orange and lemon juices, sugar, honey and ginger in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Remove from the heat.

Add the pectin, cayenne and bourbon, if using. Pour into a bowl, cover and refrigerate until cold.

Freeze the sorbet just until it is the consistency of very softly whipped cream. (You can eat it now, if you wish; otherwise, process as directed.)

Pack the sorbet into a storage container, press a sheet of parchment paper directly against the surface and seal with an airtight lid. Freeze in the coldest part of your freezer until firm, at least 4 hours.

Download recipe  Download Recipe


A friend brought me a version of this made with pumpkin elixir when I was ailing and it saved the day. Nothing like spice and citrus to clear things up. And it will be no surprise to you that I TOTALLY remember that movie (of course this has nothing to do with Bridget Fonda's character being named Janet and hopelessly in love with the musician), and the thing with the garage door clickers, and how in the last scene, in the elevator, he finally says it when she sneezes...
Janet on April 24, 2012 at 7:33 am —
Kindred! LMAO
laura on April 24, 2012 at 8:11 am —
i beg to differ--i loved that movie! and yes, the bless you part has always stuck with me, partly because of my never-ending, undying love for Matt Dillon, but more because it was such a simple but sweet gesture. the sorbet looks amazing--love how you went from Singles to sorbet and it still made sense!
nikki on April 24, 2012 at 9:07 am —
Amazing what an impact that movie had on us vulnerable chicks of a certain age...
laura on April 24, 2012 at 9:18 am —
I don't remember the movie, but I LOVE cayenne - this sounds marvelous. Thank you for sharing!
Dana on April 25, 2012 at 7:34 am —
It's hot stuff, Dana! Hope you enjoy it.
laura on April 25, 2012 at 9:56 am —