by Alissa Lively
After dinner on our most recent date night, my husband and I were looking over the restaurant’s dessert menu and my heart leapt at this offering: Seasonal Fruit Crisp. While I love apple pie as much as the next girl, at this point in the season I’m a little apple-pied out, and I’ve been longing for something like those delicious fruit pies and crisps and crumbles of summer.
Unfortunately, this particular seasonal fruit crisp was not destined to fulfill that longing: It ended up being a plum and golden raisin crisp that, while sounding lovely, was overstewed and overspiced. A little too seasonal for me.
And so begins the oh-so-long slog to spring, with very few fruity desserts to get me by. Try as they might, chocolate desserts can never quite fill the void that opens once the summer and fall fruits disappear from the grocery stores.
Luckily, citrus fruits, while not quite up to my standards of a strawberry or peach, really come through in the clutch during the winter months. As Zoe posted last year during the dregs of winter, citrus comes into its own right about now, and it couldn’t be more welcome in the Lively household. Around Christmas, clementines became our perfect snacking fruit; now that they’re fading, oranges and grapefruits are taking their place.
Even better, Fine Cooking has stepped up with the perfect remedy for my fruity dessert cravings: orange sherbet. It is so fresh and fruity and creamy and zingy that I might be set until spring. Take that, you crisps and crumbles! Your emotional power over me is broken.
The process is super simple, as you can see from the recipe. The hardest (and most time-consuming) part was juicing all those darn oranges; at one point I thought about quitting and just drinking the juice that I had already squeezed. But seriously, thank goodness I didn’t: The resulting sherbet was so worth the effort.
And don’t let the mention of an ice cream maker deter you: David Lebovitz has a great article on making ice cream without a machine. In a nutshell, you vigorously mix the ice cream/sherbet liquid periodically as it freezes (it takes about two to three hours), and you’re done! Great for the ice cream machine–challenged among us.
Now there’s nothing standing between you and the best dessert of the season. Well, the best dessert of the season according to me… Anyone want to challenge me on this? What are you favorite winter desserts?
Images: Alissa Lively