Sangria Sorbet for Any Occasion That Could Possibly Arise

Do you like sangria? Haha, just kidding, that is not even a real question because of course you do! There is not a human on this planet who wouldn’t love to sit outside on a day like today, sipping away on a ice-cold glass of sweet sangria. (I’m sure there are robots who don’t like it because it makes them short circuit, but let’s not worry about them right now.) Sangria is good pretty much any time of day or night, but it’s particularly great for all types parties — which there are about to be a lot of since the warm weather entertaining season is officially underway. In fact, you might be hosting a party this very weekend. There sure are a lot of reasons to celebrate: Mother’s Day, the Kentucky Derby, people having birthdays, or you could throw a belated Cinco de Mayo fiesta.

Regardless of what occasion you’re marking, you’ll obviously want include sangria in the festivities. But you know what would be even more entertaining than just making a big pitcher of it? Making a big pitcher of it and then freezing it, magically turning it into sangria sorbet. Sangria that you can eat with a spoon?! Yes, that is what I am talking about. It’s an all-purpose refreshment: a tasty drink and a tempting dessert — a drinksert! I’m just going to let you take a minute to imagine how wonderful it would feel to experience the sensation of chilled, slushy sweet red wine melting in your mouth… Are you sold? Then please come along with me on this journey to the heart of deliciousness.

There are a few things to keep in mind before we dive in. First, I make this with my ice cream maker, but if you don’t have one you can make it by hand. It will just take more time and patience. Second, this makes a rather large batch of sangria; so you’ll likely not be able to fit the whole thing in the bowl of your ice cream maker. If you prefer, you can cut the batch in half, but I usually make a full batch because a) then you have leftover sangria which you can drink while you wait for the sorbet to freeze up, and b) if you make a half-batch you’ll be left with an open half-bottle of wine, which you’d need to use up anyway, so you might as well enjoy it as sangria. OK, let’s get started.

Here’s what you need:

-1 bottle of red wine (I usually go with something Spanish; this time I used rioja)

-1 cup of Grand Marnier (or other orange-y liqueur)

-½ cup of brandy

-1 cup of orange juice

-2 cups of club soda

-¼ cup of sugar

-Any kind of fruit you like for garnish

Here’s what you do:

-Pour the bottle of wine into a large pitcher. Then add in the Grand Marnier, brandy, orange juice, and club soda.

-Slowly sprinkle the sugar into the wine mixture. Stir as you go, making sure the sugar is completely dissolved. Taste it a few times along the way and stop when you feel the sangria is sweet enough for you. I make mine a bit sweeter than I would a normal sangria because the extra sugar makes for a nice sorbet, but if you’d prefer yours on the more subtle side then don’t feel compelled to add all of the sugar.

-If you’re using an ice cream maker, pour as much as you can fit into its bowl (reserve the rest for drinking) and follow the machine’s instructions from there. Note: the alcohol means this sorbet takes a long time to freeze. You’ll probably have to run the machine for more time than you usually would. I ran mine for two cycles of 40 minutes each, but you’ll have to experiment with yours to see how long it needs. Once the mixture has gotten reasonably frozen and slushy (you’ll know it’s ready when there’s hardly any extra liquid swimming around in there), transfer it to a bowl/plastic container with a lid and freeze it for a few more hours, until it’s really firmed up. It will never get as solid as ice cream does, but it will be thick enough to scoop.

-If you don’t have an ice cream maker, pour the sangria into a 9 x 13 pan or other wide casserole-type dish. (Reserve whatever you can’t fit in the pan for drinking.) Put the pan in the freezer and monitor it until you start to see crystals appearing around the edges. Use a fork to break up the crystals and mix them into the liquid, and then put it back in the freezer. Check it every 30 minutes or so and scrape/stir it up vigorously each time. After a few hours (maybe three or four, but it will depend on your freezer), it will be at a solidly slushy state. At this point, transfer it to a bowl or plastic container with a lid and freeze it a little while longer until it’s firm enough to scoop.

-Scoop it into bowls or glasses and garnish with whatever fruit you like. I love to serve mine with berries, but the berries at my grocery store looked wilted and sad today so I just went with simple orange slices. Apples, grapes, and pineapples are all delicious as well. You could also put some whipped cream or mint leaves or anything else that you think would look pretty or taste good.

-Serve it immediately because it gets slushy pretty fast. The good news is that even if it melts you just end up with really cold sangria, which is still pretty darn delicious.

That’s it! Now that you have a go-to drinksert recipe for all of your summer entertaining. Enjoy!