Chocolate-Earl Grey Sorbet

Fall 2003

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Earl Grey tea is flavored with the peel of bergamot, a small citrus fruit grown in Italy. Bergamot flesh is very acidic, but the peel is prized for its fragrant oil. The tea adds a hint of citrus and tannins to make this cool chocolate sorbet even more refreshing.

Chocolate-Earl Grey Sorbet

Makes: 6 servings, 1/2 cup each

Active Time:

Total Time:


  • 4 cups water
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 4 Earl Grey tea bags, (see Tip)
  • 1 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder, (see Ingredient note)
  • 1 ounce good-quality bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped


  1. Bring water and sugar to a boil in a large saucepan. Add tea bags and remove from the heat. Cover the pan and steep for 15 minutes.
  2. Remove the tea bags and discard. Place the pan over medium-high heat and slowly add cocoa, whisking until smooth. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer until the mixture thickens slightly, about 20 minutes.
  3. Remove the pan from the heat. Add chocolate and stir until completely melted and smooth. Pass through a strainer into a medium bowl. Cover and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, at least 2 hours.
  4. Transfer the mixture to an ice cream maker and freeze according to manufacturer's directions. (Alternatively, freeze in a shallow metal pan until solid, about 6 hours. Break into chunks and process in a food processor until smooth.) The sorbet should be thick and icy after processing. If you prefer it firmer, place in the freezer for 30 minutes.

Tips & Notes

  • Make Ahead Tip: Store in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 2 days. If it becomes too firm, let soften in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes before serving. | Equipment: Ice cream maker or food processor
  • Tip: If you are not fond of Earl Grey tea, use 1 tablespoon freshly grated orange zest instead.
  • Ingredient note: Dutch-process cocoa is treated with alkali to neutralize its natural acidity. This process produces cocoa that is darker and has a mellower chocolate flavor than regular cocoa. Some brands to look for: Droste, Schokinag, Bensdorp, Pernigotti (;;


Per serving: 147 calories; 3 g fat (2 g sat, 1 g mono); 0 mg cholesterol; 35 g carbohydrates; 3 g protein; 0 g fiber; 3 mg sodium; 361 mg potassium.

Carbohydrate Servings: 2

Exchanges: 2 other carbohydrates, 1/2 fat

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