Wednesday, June 27, 2012
When the strawberry season is almost over and you have some really ripe ones that you want to use up quickly, this is the perfect recipe for those berries. Ever since I started making my own ice cream, I’ve never look back to store bought ones. This Roasted Strawberry Ice Cream is by far the most strawberr-ey ice cream I’ve ever tasted, period. There are three secrets to intensify the strawberry flavor in this ice cream and I’m going to tell you what they are….so, they are not really secrets any more after this post. You probably guessed one of the secrets from the title already.
Yes, roasting the strawberries really intensify the flavor. The second secret? The aged balsamic vinegar I added during roasting. The slightly tangy and sweet balsamic vinegar really compliment the sweet and tart strawberries well. The roasting was pretty straight forward so I didn’t include that step in the pictorial below. After roasting, you’ll get some deep dark red and soften strawberry with a thick syrup, from it’s natural juices, honey and the aged balsamic vinegar = killer combination and it’s so good I can puree this stuff and use that as a sauce/syrup for waffles and pancakes…hm….I think we need another post for those.
For any great ice cream, you need to start off with a great vanilla ice cream base. This time, I used both a vanilla bean and vanilla extract. The vanilla been is sure an investment, but it is so worth it and I ensure nothing goes to waste. I’m going to tell you why in just a minutes. First, let’s head to the kitchen and find out how I make the ice cream, shall we?
1) Heat the milk, sugar and salt until the mixture reaches a simmer.
2) With a paring knife, scrape off the seeds of the vanilla bean.
3) Place both the seeds and bean pod into the milk mixture, cover and let it steep off the heat for an hour.
4) In a separate bowl, whisk the egg yolks together.
5) Reheat the milk mixture. While whisking, slowly add the re-heated milk mixture into the yolks.
6) Pour the egg yolk mixture back to the saucepan and cook the custard until thicken and coat the spatula.
7) Place a strainer on a large bowl with the cream. Strain the custard into the cream. Stir in vanilla extract and raspberry liqueur.
8) Chill the mixture over night. The next day, remove the vanilla bean pod and churn the ice cream mixture with the roasted strawberry mixture according to the manufacture’s instructions.
Remember I told you about nothing goes to waste with the vanilla bean? Yes, I’m just checking to make sure you’re still with me. Ready? Simply wash and dry the vanilla bean pod and place it in an air tight container, cover with some sugar and store it in a cool place, such as your pantry. There, you have just made vanilla sugar. I have a huge jar that I’ve been using in many of my recipes as shown in the picture below. The vanilla sugar is good with Meyer Lemon Curd with Vanilla Sugar, Vanilla Sugar Palmiers, Meyer Lemon Meringue Tartlets or any recipe that your heart desires. Of course, you can use this vanilla sugar when you make ice cream in the future. Each time I used a vanilla bean, I add the pod to this jar. As you use up the sugar, add some back periodically to cover the beans. I love opening the lid of this jar because the aroma is so amazing with the vanilla bean. Inhale…exhale…inhale…exhale…ahhh….smells so good! Now, you can go into your kitchen and make yourself a jar of this goodness. You can thank me later.
In this recipe, I used a little raspberry liqueur to enhance the flavor and texture of the ice cream. This is the third secret to intensify the berry flavor in this ice cream. Why raspberry? Because that’s what I have on hand. hehe….I’ll try to get the strawberry one when I have a chance. Again, you can’t really taste the alcohol at all but the berry flavor really intensify by it. The liqueur also enhances the ice cream texture because alcohol lowers the freezing point. The ice cream stays creamier and smoother as it does not freeze as solid and is less likely to form ice crystals. I hope you enjoy today’s recipe, tutorial and tips.
Until next time, stay cool and stay hungry for more yummy recipes. Yes, you can drool a little with this picture below….shhh…I promise I won’t tell.
Roasted Strawberry Ice Cream: (Printable Recipe)
2 pounds fresh strawberries, washed, padded dry and hulled
1/4 cup honey
2 tablespoons aged balsamic vinegar
1 cup whole milk
A pinch of salt
3/4 cup sugar
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
2 cups heavy cream
5 large egg yolks
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon raspberry liqueur
Preheat Oven to 300°F, place strawberries in a large glass or ceramic baking dish in a single layer. Gently toss in honey and balsamic to coat. Stir with a wooden spoon once or twice during roasting. Roast until the strawberries turn into a deep red color and the syrup has thicken, about 90 minutes. Let cool completely, cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
In a medium sauce pan, heat the milk, salt, and sugar on low heat until simmer. With a paring knife, scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean into the milk along with the bean pod. Cover, remove from heat, and let the mixture infuse for one hour.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg yolks. Rewarm the milk mixture to a simmer. While constantly whisking, gradually pour the milk mixture into the yolks. Scrape the warmed yolks mixture back into the saucepan.
Continue to cook the mixture over low heat and stirring constantly with a flat bottom wooden spatula. Cook until the custard thickens, able to coat the spatula, and reached 170 degree F.
Place the cream in a large mixing bowl with a strainer on top. Strain the custard into the heavy cream. Stir in vanilla extract and raspberry liqueur, and refrigerate to chill thoroughly. Preferably overnight.
Remove the vanilla bean pod and churn the custard in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
Note: Do not throw away the vanilla bean pod. Simply rinse and dry the pod and store it in a container of cover with sugar. You can use the vanilla sugar to make ice cream or other bake goods in the future.