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Super sorbet shaver

Super shaver cuts ultrathin layers from frozen food to make deliciously smooth sorbet, sauce, and soup.


Summer has started, and the heat is on. Those of us in the Kitchen Appliance blog network have brought you blogs about industrial-size icemakers, portable countertop icemakers, and ice cream machines in the last few weeks, and as June draws to a close, things don't seem as if they're going to cool down anytime soon.

Sipping a drink on ice is one way to cool down, but the tastiest and most delicious way to cool your core temperature on a sweltering 90-plus afternoon is a cool cup of ice cream or sorbet. There are a number of places to go to buy ready-made sorbet, but in my neighborhood, one of these gourmet pints of frozen pleasure can set you back more than $5. Since when does it cost $5 to buy flavored ice? In any case, on the hottest of hot days, the last thing I want to do is leave my air-conditioned apartment, and something tells me that I'd have trouble finding someone to deliver sorbet to my doorstep.

Thankfully, the Pacojet is a machine that will curb your craving for the sweet stuff: it can make sorbet out of literally anything directly from a solid frozen state.

The Pacojet works using a new process duly named "pacotizing" to process any type of food into a smooth mousse or sorbet. All you have to do is put your ingredients into one of the liter beakers provided, top off with juice, sweeten if desired, and freeze. Straight from the deep freeze, the Pacojet shaves the contents of the beaker into layers less than two microns thick (compared with a human hair, which is between 17 and 181 microns in diameter Physics factbook). The resultant sorbet has a supersmooth texture and is at the perfect sorbet-serving temperature of minus 12 degrees Celsius. This recipe shows you how a pineapple gets pacotized.

Pictured: Cabernet Franc sorbet

The Pacojet doesn't need to be stowed away during the colder months either. It can be used to make sauces, soup, mousse, terrines, farces, herb and spice concentrates, and ice creams (check out the recipes for Gorgonzola mousse, cream of asparagus soup, and garlic paste on the recipes tab of its Web site). And the lobster bisque recipe can be made by "pacotizing" whole lobster, even with the shells.

The price tag is steep at $3,750, which includes shipping and eight beakers. But if you ever decide to run your own in-house sorbet business or you plan on several hot summers to come, then it could definitely be worth the investment.