It is starfruit season in Florida, and our tree is heavy with fruit. About a week ago, a summer storm came through and with the weight of the rain and the strength of the wind took down a large branch full of fruit. It was ripe enough to collect (about 5 shopping bags worth) and we’ve been swimming in fruit ever since; eating it for breakfast, juicing it, snacking on it and giving bags away to friends. This morning I collected some for sorbet; an experiment, since I’ve never made it, but it seemed like an excellent way to use up and preserve such a abundance of beautiful fruit. I don’t have many starfruit recipes other than juicing it or just eating it.
If you’ve never had starfruit (carambola is it’s real name), it’s so good. It’s flesh is firm and juicy, and it’s flavor is sweet but mild, slightly citrusy-floral and fragrant. They are high in vitamin C, potassium and antioxidants and low in sugar. Look for fruit that is bright yellow-orange and has nice, firm skin. Greenish yellow fruit will continue to ripen indoors for a few days. To prep: slice off both ends, trim the sides (just the edges, they’re a little tough), slice and remove seeds. The skin is thin and edible.
With those introductions out of the way, let’s get to the sorbet. I am a firm believer that everything is better cold, almost any fruit will sorbet and that an all-fruit, frozen sorbet is just a guiltless version of ice cream. And this starfruit recipe is a great way to get through a bunch of fruit and ideal for anyone who has a carambola tree in their yard.
Starfruit (Carambola) Sorbet
6-8 Starfruit, fresh
1/4 cup honey (optional)
1 fresh lime
Prep and chop your fresh starfruit as shown above. Puree using food processor (recommended) or blender. Your should have about 4 cups Add water or juice if needed. Add honey, if needed. Add lime juice. Taste and adjust as needed, flavor should be slightly intense (see notes). Freeze according to your ice cream maker and then overnight, if runny.
If your fruit is sweet and ripe, you may not need honey. You can sub honey for another sweeter of choice. When adding sweeter and lime, taste as you go. The freezing process will mute the flavors some, so you’ll want everything a little more amplified. If you have time, let the sweetened puree sit in the fridge over night. It will be cold and freeze up faster and the sugars from your sweeter will have time to bind with the juice. This will make it keep better, it won’t freeze as hard. Finally, this would make an excellent cocktail base. Add rum or vodka directly to your ice cream maker and serve if you want! It will make a slushy frozen cocktail. (Alternately, blend together with alcohol after frozen.)
Looking for more vegan fruit-based frozen desserts?
Pineapple Basil Vegan Ice cream (with coconut milk)
Watermelon and Mango Sorbet