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Sorbet Cake

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Chef notes

I went to the Feast of San Gennaro in Little Italy in New York City every year growing up. It's a celebration of Italian American culture to the nth degree. My favorite items were always the cannoli and the spumoni. Spumoni is an layered dessert that consists of a few flavors of ice cream (often pistachio, strawberry and vanilla to represent the colors of the Italian flag). It's festive, colorful and above all, tasty and refreshing. This is a good, no-bake dessert with some dramatic flair for spring and summer. I make it with sorbet so it's even lighter and more refreshing.


  • 1 pint lemon sorbet, softened
  • 25-30 large mint leaves, stemmed
  • 1 pint strawberry sorbet, softened
  • 1 cup sliced almonds, toasted and cooled
  • 1 pint chocolate sorbet, softened
  • cups semi sweet chocolate chips



The sorbet should be somewhat soft so you can work each with a spoon and mold it into a layer of this dessert. Line a 1½-quart loaf pan with a layer of plastic wrap so it overlaps on either side.


Spoon and press all of the lemon sorbet in an even layer in the bottom of the pan. Layer the mint leaves in a single layer on top of the sorbet. Freeze for a few minutes while you soften the strawberry sorbet.


Spoon the strawberry sorbet carefully over the mint leaves and spread so it becomes an even layer.


Sprinkle with an even layer of the almonds and freeze for a few minutes while you soften the chocolate sorbet.


Spoon the chocolate sorbet carefully over the almonds, fold the overlapping plastic over it and press gently to smooth into an even layer. Open the plastic and sprinkle with an even layer of the chocolate chips. Fold the plastic back over it. Freeze for at least two hours or even overnight.


Open the plastic and fold it over the outside of the pan so it doesn't get tangled as you unmold. Turn the sorbet "cake" out onto a serving platter or flat surface. Remove the plastic completely. Use a serrated knife to cut slices. Sometimes I serve this with a warm chocolate sauce or unsweetened whipped cream.