summer berry ice cream
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Yes, I know – proper ice cream involves custard. Contrary to what The Weather Man believes*, there are eggs in the best Italian gelati. You temper eggs, make custard and watch so it doesn’t come to the boil – fuss and bother. Personally I’d rather have frozen yoghurt, but some people, you just can’t argue with. They want the taste of gelato but don’t want to know about eggs.
As I don’t normally lie about what’s in my food*, I embarked on a research. It soon transpired that my apparently genius idea of churning whipped cream was rubbish – you get sweet frozen butter. It kinda makes sense, with ‘churn’ and ‘cream’ being your key words. Weirdly, you get slightly a better result when you freeze cooked flavoured cream. But if you want the smoothness, roundness and velvety quality that only eggs can give to ice cream – you got to cheat.
Breaking the cream with yoghurt works well but it’s not enough: it turns out there are two magic extras that do the trick: a little cream cheese and replacing sugar with corn syrup. Frankly, I don’t know what precisely makes the difference between sugar and corn syrup added to the ice cream; all I know it gets me the result.
Use berries that you like best, are cheap, the ripest or all three. Don’t skip the roasting though – it enhances the outcome on par with the cream cheese.
*he has problems with eggs. I think he only once in his life ate a whole egg. He eats only the yolk out of a boiled egg. Which is odd as he loves meringues and macarons, but stays away from custard – so it’s the other way round with eggs used in baking. Go figure.
*I should say I don’t normally lie, full stop. Unless I absolutely have to.
summer berry ice creamServings: a pint of ice creamTime: 30 minutes plus chilling and churning
- 250g (2 cups) blueberries, raspberries, cherries or strawberries; or a mix
- 1 tsp caster sugar
- a squeeze of lemon
- 120ml (½ cup) full fat yoghurt
- 120ml (½ cup) double cream
- 50g (¼ cup) cream cheese
- 60g (3 tbsp.) corn syrup
- more sugar, to taste
To intensify the flavour, lightly roast the berries: preheat the oven to 230C/450F/gas 8. Stone and halve the cherries, halve or quarter the strawberries. Spread the berries in a shallow oven dish and sprinkle with the teaspoon of sugar. Bake them for 10 minutes, shaking the dish so they roll about, halfway through the time. Remove from the oven, drizzle with a little lemon juice and leave to cool.
Place all the ingredients in a blender; make sure you scrape all the juices with the berries. Pulse until smooth. Pour into a jug and chill for at least a few hours and best overnight; every now and then whisk the mix with a hand whisk to stop the fat from separating.
Churn in the ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions, transfer to a container and freeze. Remove the ice cream from the freezer 20 minutes before serving.