Strawberry Ice CreamPosted: May 14, 2012
Now that the temperature is consistently above 60 degrees, it feels like spring has finally arrived, and with it, the first batches of spring produce.
I’m not going to lie, I’m not a seasonal cook, nor am I striving to be one at this point in time. Yes, I would like to have a CSA share someday and experience the onslaught of seasonal produce, but I’m just not there yet. I also have to decide whether it’s even a worthwhile investment, since neither Luke nor myself are enthusiastic fans of vegetables.
A CSA share consisting of fruit, on the other hand, would be a dream come true for me. I love fruit, and am trying to be conscious of buying it in season. While strawberry season doesn’t really start in New England until June, I am already excited.
I remember picking them at the local orchard, shuffling about on my hands and knees looking for picturesque, plump, red berries.
To me, strawberry ice cream is one of those foods that represents the coming of springtime. The key to this ice cream’s rich strawberry flavor is roasting the berries before mashing them. The roasting process helps bring out more of the berries’ natural sweetness, adding an extra strawberry kick that takes this ice cream to a whole new level of deliciousness.
Strawberry Ice Cream
Makes about 1 quart
For the strawberries:
3/4 pound fresh strawberries
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 Tbsp sugar
2 Tbsp corn syrup
For the ice cream:
2 cups heavy cream
1 cup whole milk
3/4 cup granulated sugar
pinch of salt
5 large egg yolks
1 recipe of roasted strawberries
Toss the berries with the balsamic and sugar, lay them on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper or a silicone mat. Make sure you use one with sides, because the juices will over run the pan. Place the pan in the oven and turn it on to 300°F and slowly roast them until they have given up their juices and are kind of mushy looking. Their color will also be darker. This will take about 30 to 45 minutes depending on the size of the fruit.
Scoop the fruit and all of its sugars into a bowl. Add in the corn syrup and mash the berries with a fork or a potato masher. You can also put them in a food processor, but I like to leave some larger chunks of berry. Chill them until cold.
Meanwhile make the ice cream base. In a medium saucepan, mix 1 cup of the cream with the milk, sugar, and a pinch of salt. Warm the cream mixture over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar dissolves and tiny bubbles begin to form around the edge of the pan, 3 to 4 minutes.
Pour the remaining cup of cream into a large bowl and set a fine strainer on top. Whisk the egg yolks in a medium bowl.
In a steady stream, pour half of the warm cream mixture into the egg yolks, whisking constantly to prevent the eggs from curdling.
Pour the egg mixture back into the saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring constantly and scraping the bottom with a heatproof rubber spatula until the custard thickens slightly (it should be thick enough to coat the spatula and hold a line drawn through it with a finger), 4 to 8 minutes. An instant-read thermometer should read 175° to 180°F at this point. Don’t let the sauce overheat or boil, or it will curdle. Immediately strain the custard into the cold cream.
Let the custard cool to room temperature, then stir in the strawberry puree. Refrigerate the custard until completely chilled, at least 6 hours. Freeze the custard in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Transfer to an airtight container, and store in your freezer.