Okay, remember when I said I loved heatwaves? I don’t! I take it all back! I’m sorry, just make it stop! Our brief reprieve from the inferno is long gone. We’ve traveled beyond 30°C every day this week and I got so beyond burnt on Sunday that I now regard bras as torture devices and am committed to making parasols cool again. And the worst part? Running through my sprinkler is just a means of survival now. There’s no joy to it…okay, that’s a lie. But it did use to be optional. So, I’m fighting back with this Wasabi Honeydew Sorbet with Sesame Seed Brittle. It’s sweet, refreshing and the right kind of hot, goddamnit! Oh, and no stoves or flames of any kind were involved in the making of this sorbet. The brittle is another story. Damn it, stove! I just can’t quit you!
Okay, so that part where I said I was over the heat. Well, I’m not entirely sure about it. I know I sounded pretty dang sure and intensely shouty but that’s not how I feel in my heart or summer-loving hearts. The truth is I know I will regret my harsh criticism of summer when I’m forcing my cute jeans to fit over my not-so-cute thermals. I don’t want to wish the summer away – that’s not the Canadian way. We get so little vitamin D most of the year, that I might as well soak it up now. But I have to say, I’m kinda sorta hot.
When you’re borderline dehydrated and definitely overheating, do you ever find yourself fantasizing? Not the sexy kind of fantasizing, but if you do ain’t no shame in your game. But I’m talking images of crystal clear swimming pools, crushed ice and huge frosted over glasses of water. Basically, your mind goes full Nestea commercial. Does that happen to you? Because when that happens to me, chilled, juicy slices of melon always make an appearance.
So, given my visions of idealized refreshment, it seemed only fitting to make a melon sorbet but you might be wondering why honeydew specifically? I’ll admit the choice is a bit of a headscratcher given that watermelons exist and are pink as well as delicious. But really, does world need another watermelon something? Probably, because it’s delicious. Okay, I don’t really have a point here, I just choose honeydew. I realize this is controversial.
I know the honeydew doesn’t always get the best wrap. If you watch Bojack Horseman, you know what I’m talking about. But even if you don’t, I’m sure you’re aware that the lowly honeydew never comes close to the powerhouse status of watermelon. But I’ve always liked honeydew. For some reason, I think of it as a novelty/ Probably because it turned up in my childhood home far less than say a cantaloupe. I’m also obsessed with the color. Looking at this Wasabi Honeydew Sorbet now, I realize I painted my room this exact color when I was 17. It was a horrible mistake; once the sun hit the wall the color was radioactive. But whatever.
Okay, so I’ve sidestepped this long enough, let’s talk about the wasabi element. It’s weird. I know. But I want it to be known I did not add it to be “tres quirky”. I actually added it because I thought it would taste good. And, you know what, I was vindicated because it did, so there’s that. I initially thought wasabi would play well in this dessert because honeydew is quite sweet and straightforward. I realized this might be why people don’t like the melon, but whatever. Obviously, when you add something as powerful and, let’s face it, sinus-clearing as wasabi you don’t want to pair with something that will fight it or (heaven forbid) up-the-ante.
The honeydew comes by its name very honestly. It tastes like honey. It’s mellow, unassuming and sweet. It is the perfect foil for a punchy, slightly savory ingredient like wasabi. But in spite of wasabi’s almost medicinal heat levels, it doesn’t have much of a flavor necessarily. Wasabi is more of a sensation if that makes sense. So, pairing it with something that could limit its pungency and add to its flavor profile without clashing is totally necessary. Basically, what I’m saying is the two ingredients in this Wasabi Honeydew Sorbet bring out the best in each other. Alone they would either be cloyingly sweet or burny and gross.
And before you all take to the comments to express your doubts of the validity of my “wasabi”, I very freely admit that I used the dyed horseradish stuff you get in the grocery store. I want people to make this recipe, not scour the earth in search of wasabi root. I would love to get my hands on the real stuff but thus far it has alluded me. If you live in Toronto and know where to find it maybe you could help a sister out? I have a comments section for a reason.
Okay, so now for the hot part. Yes, you have to turn on the stove to make the sesame brittle. But if you can’t bring yourself to do that, I completely understand. Grab a spoon and each directly from the tub of gorgeous Wasabi Honeydew Sorbet you just made. But if short-term discomfort is a price you’re willing to pay for sweet, savory, salty bliss, fire up that stove because we have brittle to make! Once you get past the heat, the brittle is very painless to make. You melt some maple syrup and coconut oil, then you pour it over some seeds, you bake it, and then you break it. The last part is so satisfying.
So, that’s the scoop (I am a monster) on this Wasabi Honeydew Sorbet with Sesame Brittle. It’s everything an adventurous palette needs on an inhumanely hot day. And hey, we got a whole season full of them ahead, so people, start cubing your melons. That’s not a euphemism, it just sounds like one.
Wasabi Honeydew Sorbet with Sesame Brittle
Wasabi Honeydew Sorbet
- 1 honeydew melon cubed
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1/4 cup water
- Juice of 1 lime
- 1-2 teaspoons wasabi
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup toasted sesame seeds
- 1 tablespoon black sesame seeds
For the sorbet
- Place the honeydew cubes on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Transfer the sheet to the freezer and freeze the melon for 4-6 hours or until solid.
- Place the frozen cubes in a large food processor and blitz until the melon is thoroughly mulched. Depending on the size of your food processor, you may have to do this in batches.
- Set the food processor on its lowest setting and add the wasabi and honey. Slowly stream in the lime juice and water. Blitz until smooth and uniform.
- Transfer the sorbet to a loaf tin and, using the back of a spoon, spread to form an even layer. Place the tin in the freezer and freeze until set. This should only take about an hour. If you freeze the sorbet for longer be sure to let it sit on the counter for 15 minutes before scooping.
For the Brittle
- While the sorbet is freezing make the brittle.
- Preheat the oven to 325°F.
- Place the sesame seeds in a small bowl. Stir to combine and set aside.
- Pour the maple syrup, coconut oil, and salt in a small saucepan. Place the saucepan over medium heat. Cook until the oil melts and the mixture appears uniform.
- Pour the syrup mixture over the seeds and stir to combine. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, taking care to cut it large enough to protect the sides of the sheet. Pour the brittle mixture into the center of the baking sheet.
- Transfer the sheet to the oven and bake for 15 minutes. Rotate the pan and bake for 10 minutes more. Remove the sheet from the oven and place it on a cooling rack. Let cool completely.
- When the brittle is cool, break it into shards and set aside.
- Scoop the sorbet into 4-5 waiting bowls. Garnish each bowl with a shard of brittle and serve immediately.