koji manzanita berries

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koji manzanita berriesTurned on to koji by our friends at Culture Pickle in Berkeley, we created this sorbet as a refreshing and complex segue into sweeter courses. The nest of ashed manzanita branches, fresh leaves, and berries correspond quietly with the berries that accompany the sorbet.


  • 200 grams | ¾ cup Champagne vinegar
  • 100 grams | ½ cup water
  • 100 grams | ½ cup sugar
  • 50 grams | ¾ cup manzanita berries
  • 200 grams | 1 cup brown jasmine rice
  • 600 grams | 2 ½ cups water
  • 200 grams | 1 cup brown rice koji
  • 850 grams | 3 ⅔ cups water
  • 200 grams | 1 cup sugar
  • 120 grams | ⅓ cup liquid glucose
  • 400 grams | 1 ¾ cups amakase
  • shio koji
  • kosher salt
How to Make It
  1. FOR THE MANZANITA BERRIES: Combine the vinegar, water, and sugar in a saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Transfer to a heatproof metal container and add the manzanita berries. Steep at room temperature for 10 minutes, then store in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours.
  2. FOR THE AMAKASE: Combine the brown rice and water in a saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Cover, lower the heat to a simmer, and cook for 40 minutes, until the rice is soft. When the rice is ready, measure 400 grams (about 2 ½ cups) of it and place in a heatproof bowl. Add the koji and mix thoroughly, then pack into a glass jar with a lid. Hold in a hot-water bath set at 140°F (60°C) for 12 hours. Remove from the water bath and refrigerate.
  3. FOR THE KOJI SORBET: Combine the water, glucose, and sugar in a saucepan over medium heat and, without stirring, heat to 160°F (71°C). Transfer to a blender, add the amakase, and mix on high speed for 2 minutes, until smooth. Season with shio koji and kosher salt and mix for 2 minutes longer. Strain through a chinois into a plastic container. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for at least 12 hours.
  4. Pour into an ice cream machine and run a cycle for about 4 minutes, until slightly aerated and frozen. Store the sorbet in plastic containers in the freezer.

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