Ever since I bought my ice cream machine, I've spread my obsession with it all around, making friends and colleagues drool along the way with my descriptions. So the time had come to invite some of them over to my place, to have a cooking and ice cream-making day. As my partner was away getting in touch with his 3-year-old self in Disneyland, I decided to make this a day for the girls, and after some drinks in the pub on Friday I polled everyone and the popular choices were mushroom risotto, a salad (for which I chose and enforced my favourite Roasted butternut squash salad – needless to say no one complained!) and strawberry ice cream.
Although I love strawberry sorbet, I usually won't choose strawberry ice cream if there's anything else on offer, and therefore I had never made any before, so I thought it was a great opportunity to try a recipe by ice cream icon David Lebovitz. My Italian friend did the shopping and brought some wonderfully ripe strawberries along, maybe a bit too old to eat but 100% perfect for ice cream. While frantically making all the food I almost forgot to put half the ingredients in the ice cream machine, but at the end it was all a success, and the gelato had a very fresh and light flavour, since by using just milk it didn't carry the usual heaviness of cream.
We took the food and ice cream to the garden and had a great day discussing food and what we each like to cook from our countries now that we live in Britain (with the group comprising of one Italian, one Brazilian, one Japanese and one Greek, some interesting combinations came up!), and even more, how much it annoys us that the simple ingredients you can find everywhere in each of our home countries need a special trip and a much deeper pocket when you're in the UK (real Italian savoiardi, Japanese sticky rice, Brazilian fresh fruit and Greek pita breads – not these concoctions they sell in the supermarkets here, but REAL Greek pita breads), if they are to be found at all (I haven't found the real Greek pitas in London yet, if anyone knows any place that sells them please please tell me!).
A day later, I find myself with some leftover mascarpone, and a challenge. I don't feel like tiramisú, but what about tiramisú ice cream? Here we go. A bit of internet scouting, and a few minutes later I'm getting somewhere with an experimental recipe, since I had never thought I could make ice cream out of mascarpone. I love tiramisú ice cream, and this one, although heavier than the gelato that I usually prefer, was absolutely yummilicious. Only thing is, I added quite bit of Baileys, so this is actually a Baileys-tiramisú ice cream. If you love Baileys, you will love this, if not, use a bit less... By the way, I barely managed to take some pictures before I devoured it all (I only made a small dose to try it, I'm not that big a piggy!)
The strawberry ice cream was a lot more, so I had some more today, and I discovered that drizzling it with melted dark chocolate (which solidifies after it hits the ice cream!) makes it even yummier... Drool...and let's hope the good weather continues!
Source: Adapted from David Lebovitz
Makes about 900ml
- 500g ripe strawberries
- 100g golden granulated sugar
- 2 tbsp honey
- 370ml full fat milk
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 2 tbsp kirsch
Clean the strawberries, shake them around in a bowl with the sugar and honey and leave to rest for 30 minutes. Pour the whole contents of the bowl in a blender and liquidise. Pass through a thin sieve, squishing out all the flesh with a spoon and scraping around until only the seeds are left. A lot of recipes skip this step and put the strawberries whole, but I think it's really worth going the extra mile, as seedless gelatos are so much smoother and melt-in-the-mouth than the ones containing seeds.
In a big bowl mix together the milk, lemon juice and kirsch, adding the strawberry purée. Pour into your ice cream machine, or if you don't have one put in a freezable container (preferably metal) and freeze for 1 hour, then take out, squash with a fork and refreeze, repeating the process every half an hour or so.
Tiramisú ice cream
Source: Adapted from Tracey's Culinary Adventures
Makes about 900ml
- 450g mascarpone
- 125ml double cream
- 125ml full fat milk
- 130g sugar
- pinch of salt
- 60ml Kahlua
- 45ml Baileys
For the chocolate ripple
- 100g sugar
- 80ml water
- ½ cup strongly brewed espresso
- 50g cocoa powder
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
In a large bowl blend together the mascarpone, milk, cream, sugar, salt, Kahlua and Baileys. Chill the mixture in the fridge while you make the chocolate ripple.
In a saucepan mix together all the ingredients for the ripple over a medium heat. Bring to the boil, stirring constantly, until the sauce thickens and covers the back of a spoon. Remove from the heat, cool, and then chill in the fridge.
Pour the ice cream mix into your ice cream machine, and when it's done, drizzle the chocolate ripple between layers of ice cream when you're transferring it into its freezable container. If you don't have an ice cream machine put the ice cream mix in a freezable container (preferably metal) and drizzle the chocolate ripple also in layers, freeze for 1 hour, then take out, squash with a fork and refreeze, repeating the process every half an hour or so.