Monday, June 18, 2012

Strawberry Ice Cream

A fun project on a day that is not too hot is making ice cream. It is so much richer and creamier than what comes from the store and it makes delicious use of fresh, ripe fruit. I prefer the French version, which, of course, is made with custard. The American version usually only contains milk or cream.
One of our favorite flavors is strawberry. Sweet and very berry flavored it is a fun treat for a hot summer day.
The whole thing takes a few hours, so be sure to start around noon. You will make the custard first, let it cool in the fridge, and then make the strawberry sauce. Combine the two well and place in the ice cream maker.

If you are interested in making vanilla, chocolate, or coffee, click here for the recipe.
For the custard:
Makes about 1 1/2 pints
1 cup whole milk
2 cups heavy cream
1/8 teaspoon of salt
1 1/2 vanilla beans (split lengthwise)
2 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
3/4 cups sugar
2 eggs

Combine cream, milk, sugar, and salt in a heavy saucepan. Scrape seeds from vanilla beans with tip of a knife into cream mixture, then drop in pods. Heat cream mixture just to a boil.

Whisk eggs in a large bowl, then add hot cream mixture one ladle at a time. Once you have added two or three ladles, pour mixture into saucepan and cook over moderately low heat, stirring constantly, until slightly thickened and registers 170°F on thermometer (do not let boil). ( I never use a thermometer)

Pour custard through a fine-mesh sieve into a clean metal bowl, then cool, stirring occasionally. Chill, covered, until cold, at least 3 hours, up to 24.

For strawberry sauce:
3 cups strawberries, washed, hulled, and sliced
1/2 cup sugar

 Combine strawberries and sugar in a pot on the stove. Cook, stirring and mashing with a potato masher until all the sugar is dissolved and mixture comes to a boil. Boil for 1 minute. Bring to room temperature. Combine with the cooled custard.
Freeze custard in an ice cream maker according to manufacturers directions. Transfer to an airtight container and put in freezer.

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