Date: Tue, 25 Jul 1995 16:32:03 -0400
From: "Peter L. Patrick" PPATRICK[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]GUVAX.ACC.GEORGETOWN.EDU
Subject: Re: sherbe(r)t
I don't believe your recollection of sherbet w/milk is correct.
Neither sherbet nor sorbet (nor sherbert), classically, should have
any milk products in them. The distinction you're thinking of may be ice
milk vs. ice cream, latter having more milkfat. This was never systematic
and was recently abolished by the FDA in favor of the more specific
(though still somewhat subjective) system of "ice cream", "reduced ice
cream", "low-fat ice cream", and "fat-free icecream", respectively
having less and less milkfat. Sherbet, however you spell it, never had
any, as far as I'm aware, but used gelatin for body.
That's the US marketing tradition. But in the Arabic
tradition, it wasn't even frozen-- just a cool drink of fruit juice
and water and sugar (Arabic "sharbah" is the root, related to our
'syrup'). People in Vikram Seth's 'A Suitable Boy' are always drinking
sherbet, for example.
Then again, I won't be responsible for what some company has
put into a box and called "sherbe(r)t"!