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I'm surprised by the number of sherbet and ice recipes that I come across in old recipe books: a 1918 ginger sherbet from Belleville, Ont.'s The Women's Patriotic League cookery book; watermelon ice and strawberry sherbet from the 1898 The Early Canadian Galt Cook Book. Here is an 1881 peach sherbet in the Ladies' Association of Bank Street Church, Ottawa's community cookbook, The Canadian Economist: a book of tried and tested receipts: the profits to be devoted to the church.


1 pound of sugar [two cups]

1 quart of boiling water [4 cups]

5 lemons

8 peaches

5 egg whites


Dissolve 1 pound of sugar in 1 quart of boiling water; add the juice from 5 lemons, let cool. Pare 8 peaches, and press through a sieve, when lemon syrup is cool, add peaches and freeze, when slightly frozen, add the whites of 5 eggs well beaten.