Blackberry and Merlot Sorbet

When anyone talks about blackberries I always think back to when I was eleven.   I had just passed my Cycling Proficiency Test and was allowed to go on my bike with my best friend to go blackberrying.   From then on, right up until I was 17, the last week of the school summer holidays was always bookmarked for me by picking blackberries.  My poor mother couldn’t keep up with my collecting abilities.   There were endless jars of blackberry jam in the cupboard and bags of frozen fruit in the freezer.   

This recipe for Blackberry and Merlot Sorbet is a very grown up and sophisticated sorbet that I would not have been allowed to have back them.    

Although I call it Blackberry and Merlot Sorbet this recipe can be made with whatever red wine you fancy.   I chose merlot because it is a well rounded, affordable easy drinking wine.

This recipe is a doddle to make if you have an ice cream maker.  However all is not lost if you don’t and have saint like qualities!    You can make this without one by putting the unfrozen moisture in the freezer and taking it out to whisk every 30 mins until it is finally set.  Or you could make the mix into a granita by freezing it solid on a baking sheet and raking a fork through it to make little crystal shards ready to pile elegantly into individual glasses.   Whatever way this is simply delicious.   Serve with Little Almond Biscuits or Granny’s Shortbread.


Ingredients (serves 6)

  • 500ml Merlot (or other red wine of choice)
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 1 tbsp glucose syrup
  • zest and juice of a lemon
  • 250g blackberries (fresh or frozen)

Blackberry and Merlot Sorbet churning in ice cream maker


  1. Put the wine into a saucepan and boil to reduce it by half.
  2. Add sugar, glucose and the zest and juice of the lemon to the pan, turn down heat and simmer until the sugar is dissolved.
  3. Add the blackberries to the pan and continue cooking until the blackberries soften and release their juices.
  4. Remove from the heat and pour the mix through a fine meshed sieve.  This removes most of the pips.
  5. Put the sieved mixture into the fridge to chill.
  6. When cold, transfer to ice cream machine and churn till frozen.  Transfer to a container and put in freezer until ready to serve.

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