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No Ice Cream? Try this Dairy Free Riesling Poached Pear Sorbet

Posted by Jesus on Apr 29, 2016

You know what's terrible? Not being able to have ice cream on a hot day. I’m lactose intolerant which means growing up in a Mexican household that put dairy on everything was torture. I remember being a kid and having to eat paletas de agua, which literally means “water popsicles” because I couldn't have milk. Tragic. But as an adult, I've discovered the magic of sorbet and now my addiction cannot be stopped.

jenisPhoto credit: @jenisicecreams on Instagram

I love going to new places and trying different flavors of sorbet. Last week my brother couldn't stop raving about this ice cream shop I've never been to called Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream in Wicker Park. Jeni’s was founded by a woman, whose ice cream addiction probably beats mine, named Jeni Britton Bauer in 2002. Jeni’s is a Certified B Corporation endorsed by the international nonprofit B Lab as a company that meets rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency. The company uses Direct Trade ingredients, employs a diverse team of people, works with women and minority-owned businesses, and their dizzying array of flavors are incredible.

ice cream

One flavor I could not pass up was their Riesling Poached Pear Ice Cream. I was interested in this flavor combination because The Chopping Block added a new wine to the family this year: Dr. Konstantin Frank Dry Riesling. Did you know we sell wine and spirits? We absolutely do! Most customers don’t know this and are surprised to find out we carry a very impressive, yet affordable, list of wines and liquors and the dry riesling is my favorite.

ice cream conePhoto credit: @jenisicecreams on Instagram

Luckily for all of us, Jeni’s has made their Riesling Poached Pear Sorbet recipe available for everyone, and I thought I’d give it a try. Here’s what you'll need:

pearssugar riesling

 watercorn syrup


Riesling Poached Pear Sorbet

Makes about 1 quart

6 medium Anjou, Bartlett, Bosc, or Comice pears, peeled, cored, and cut into 1-inch pieces

½ cup sugar

½ Riesling

¼ cup water

¼ cup light corn syrup


Combine all the ingredients in a medium saucepan, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Continue cooking for 5 to 8 minutes, until the pears are soft. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly.


Puree the pear mixture in 2 batches in a food processor until completely smooth. Force through a sieve. Fill a large bowl with ice and water. Pour the mixture into a 1-gallon Ziploc freezer bag and submerge the sealed bag in the ice bath. Let stand, adding more ice as necessary, until cold, about 30 minutes.


Pour the sorbet base into the frozen canister and spin just until the consistency of very softly whipped cream. Pack the sorbet into a storage container, press a sheet of parchment directly against the surface, and seal with an airtight lid. Freeze in the coldest part of your freezer until firm, at least 4 hours. 

*This recipe actually made less than one quart. I’d say maybe half-quart, so adjust correctly.

Want other sorbet recipes to try at home? Try our mango and watermelon jalapeno variations!

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Topics: Riesling, pear, ice cream, sorbet

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