Ever heard of a Sgroppino? Well, it’s a lemon-flavored, creamy-smooth, frothy alcoholic beverage.
Sgropin, as it’s called in the Venetian dialect, means to untie a little knot – the kind one finds in his/her stomach following a rather large meal. Further away from La Serenissima it’s called a Sgroppino, or simply Sorbetto.
Made with milk-free lemon sorbetto (sorbet) and a bit of alcohol, the Sgroppino was served in aristocratic Venetian homes during dinner to cleanse the palate between the first and second courses – normally fish to meat – and to also help digest all that was consumed at the tail-end of the dinner. That tradition continues today, with a few minor twinks to the centuries-old recipe.
Today, the classic Sgroppino is made with lemon sorbetto, vodka and Prosecco sparkling wine. Variations include strawberry, grapefruit or mandarin sorbetto vice lemon, and, for some, a bit of limoncello (lemon liqueur), too.
Here’s the recipe I’ve tested out at my place and my friends were quite impressed.
Step-1: Thaw-out the sorbetto to a creamy consistency then place in an aluminum mixing bowl and whisk lightly.
Step-2: Pour in the vodka, whisk lightly, followed by the Prosecco and whisk a bit more.
Step-3: Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place the mix in the refrigerator for 3-4 hours.
Step-4: Dampen the glasses and place in the freezer to chill.
Step-5: Remove the bowl from the refrigerator and give the mix one final whisk to re-froth.
Step-6: Pour the mix into the pre-chilled glasses up to the top, garnish with a lemon wedge and some mint leaves, then serve.
The next time, or first time you find yourself in Venice, untie those knots by asking for a Sgroppino, during or after dinner. It’s the Venetian thing to do.