Looking for a refreshing way to capture the tart, ruby red fruit of the season? This sorbet will do the trick. If fresh strawberries aren't available yet, you can use frozen ones, or leave them out and add a little more rhubarb.
4 fresh rhubarb stalks, chopped ( 3 - 3 1/2 cups)
1/2 cup sliced fresh strawberries
2 1/2 cups of water
1 2/3 cups of sugar
2 teaspoons of orange zest (you can use lemon, if you prefer)
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 Tbsp of corn syrup OR 2 tablespoons of vodka
If you have the kind of ice cream maker that requires a frozen bowl, get that in the freezer the day before.
Ice cream makers work best with very cold ingredients. For the best results, prepare the puréed fruit the day before. You can cheat this by using your freezer and stirring the purée every 20 minutes to get is super cold, but not frozen.
In a large pot, bring the chopped rhubarb and strawberries in water with sugar, zest, and salt to a boil.
Lower the heat and cover the pot. Simmer for 5 minutes, or until the sugar has dissolved and the fruit is tender.
Remove the mixture from the heat and allow it to cool for 15 minutes.
Purée the mixture using your preferred method. An immersion blender is nice for this, but a food processor or standing blender will also do the job.
Press the mixture through a fine sieve to remove those stringy rhubarb bits. This is optional. If you don't mind the pulp, you can leave it in.
Stir in the corn syrup or vodka. This step it to keep your sorbet from being too icy. The syrup or vodka gives a smooth, creamier end result. If you plan to eat the sorbet in the first day, you can skip this step.
Cover and refrigerate until totally chilled. At least 4 hours, better overnight if you have the patience. If you're in a rush, you can use your freeze as per the "do ahead" notes above.
Process in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions. Sorbet made in an ice cream maker will be soft—more like a thick slush. If you want it more solid, transfer it to an airtight container and freeze longer. Allow it to sit at room temperature for a few minutes to soften a bit before serving.
If you don't have an ice cream maker, you can pour the purée into a shallow container and mix it up every 20-30 minutes until you get the consistency you like.