Sunday, September 30, 2012

I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for ICE CREAM!

Things aren't as busy for me as normal (Lazy September!) so I have been enjoying spending more time in the kitchen. Lately I've been getting into ice cream making. You don't need an ice cream churner to be able to make ice cream, all you need to do is mix it with your hand mixer every hour or so once you've put it in the freezer. So no excuses people! The flavours I've made over the last 2 weeks have been lemon curd, salted caramel, and strawberry-basil-pepper. The lemon ice cream is one that I've made a few times before and is always a winner because it's not a sorbet. Lemon sorbet is awesome but this creamy lemon ice cream is so refreshing and gorgeous it goes perfectly with fruit salad in the summer. The salted caramel ice cream was a first-make for me and it went down really well! It is super rich and sweet but nothing ever really beats salted caramel anything does it? The strawberry-basil-pepper ice cream caught my eye a recent Delicious magazine and I just had to give this whacky combination a try. The basil really freshens up the flavour and the pepper was so subtle I could hardly detect it (I might try putting some more pepper in it next time). Another perfect summer ice cream. Recipes follow the photos.

Lemon curd, and salted caramel ice creams

Strawberry, basil and pepper ice cream
Lemon Curd Ice Cream - from Tessa Kiros' cookbook Apples for Jam
4 egg yolks
180g caster sugar
40g butter, cut into bits
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
Juice of 2 lemons
250mL milk
375mL pouring cream (not thickened!)

Bring a pan half-full of water to the boil and then lower the heat to the absolute minimum. Put the egg yolks and sugar in a wide glass or stainless steel bowl and whisk until they are thick and creamy. Sit the bowl on top of the pan of water, add the butter and let it melt. Whisk until it watts to get thicker and creamier, then add the lemon zest and juice and carry on whisking until it thickens. It doesn't have to be cooked out like a proper lemon curd, but just until it has thickened and the egg is cooked through from the warmth of the simmering water.
Meanwhile, warm up the milk a little. Whisk it into the lemony eggs and then remove the bowl from the heat. Whisk from time to time until it's cool before you whisk in the cream. Put the bowl in the fridge until it's completely cool and then, if your bowl doesn't have a lid, pour the mixture into one that does.
Cover the bowl and put in the freezer. Whisk every hour or so or churn in an ice cream machine.

Salted Caramel Ice Cream - from Gourmet Traveller (AUS) magazine, November 2009.
Ingredients: (makes 1 litre)
150g caster sugar
6 egg yolks
50g butter, coarsely chopped
350mL pouring cream
150mL milk

Combine 100g sugar and 50mL water in a saucepan over medium heat, stir until sugar dissolves (2-3 minutes), brush sides of the pan with a wet pastry brush, then cook until deep caramel (8-10 minutes). *Make sure you watch it! The moment you turn your eyes away will be the moment it's ready and it can go from ready to burnt in no time. Meanwhile, whisk egg yolks and remaining sugar until well combined and set aside. Add butter and 1 tsp salt to caramel (be careful as it may spit) and stir until combined, add the cream and milk and stir until well combined. Ad caramel to yolk mixture in a thin steady stream, whisking continuously until incorporated. Return mixture to a clean saucepan and store over medium heat until mixture coats the back of a wooden spoon thickly. Strain through a fine sieve into a large bowl over ice, cool to room temperature, then refrigerate (in a box), stirring occasionally until cold.

Strawberry, Basil and Pepper Ice Cream - from Delicious (AUS) magazine, October 2012
Ingredients: (makes 3 litres)
3 cups (390g) strawberries, hulled and quartered
2tBs lemon juice
2tBs lime juice
330g caster sugar
Handful of basil leaves
1/2 tsp finely ground black pepper
375mL milk
500mL thickened cream
300mL pure cream
1 vanilla bean, split, seeds scraped *I actually use a great vanilla bean paste

Place the strawberries in a bowl with the lemon and lime juices and 110g sugar. Mix well, then cover with plastic wrap and place in the fridge for 2 hours to macerate.
Place half the macerated strawberries in a food processor, along with the basil and pepper. Whiz for a few minutes to form a juicy pulp, then set aside. Crush the remaining macerated strawberries with a potato masher and set aside.
Using an electric mixer, whisk the milk and remaining 220g sugar together for 2 minutes until the sugar has dissolved. Add creams, strawberry and basil puree, and vanilla seeds, then gently stir together. Chill overnight if possible or for a least 6-8 hours.
Add the crushed strawberries once it's been frozen but is still soft. *awesome yummy strawberry bits!

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