While the rest of the country goes back to school, bundles up, and prepares for the onslaught of all things pumpkin, it’s still a million (okay, 90+) degrees here in southern California. Ugh. The thought of turning on my oven this week made me cringe, so I opted for a no-fuss, cool treat instead. Behold the glory of Blueberry Cheesecake Ice Cream!
The best part of this recipe – originally featured on Pastry Affair, one of the most beautiful food blogs on the Internet – is that it doesn’t require an ice cream maker, or any fancy tools except a hand or standing mixer. It’s also incredibly easy – a great option for those who’d like to make their own ice cream, but are intimidated by the process of cooking crème anglaise. The result is a rich, creamy dessert bursting with blueberry deliciousness. I ate all three cones in this photo, if that’s any indication of its amazing flavor. Make, enjoy, and bring on the Fall!
In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, cook blueberries and granulated sugar until berries burst and release their juices (approximately 5-10 minutes). Add the cornstarch to thicken and continue cooking for another 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat and place blueberries in the freezer to cool quickly (approximately 15 minutes).
In the large bowl of an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and brown sugar until smooth. Add 1/2 cup cream and whip until the cream cheese mixture becomes incorporated. Scrape the bowl as needed. Add the rest of the cream and the vanilla extract and continue whipping until stiff peaks form. (this step may also be done with a hand mixer and a healthy dollop of patience!)
In a plastic container, spread half the whipped cream. Top with half the blueberries. Spread the remaining cream and top with the remaining blueberries. Using a knife, swirl the ice cream. Cover and place in the freezer for at least 6 hours. Serve in waffle cones, if desired.
Blackberry cobbler is – HANDS DOWN – my favourite summer dessert. As soon as I spotted the world’s largest blackberries for sale at my local farmer’s market this week, I knew cobbler was in my near future. I used a recipe that – while in my family for decades – differs from others floating around the Internet these days. It’s actually a recipe for ‘cottage pudding’, featured in the 1918 edition of the AMAZING Fannie Farmer cookbook (if you don’t have one, visit your local bookstore ASAP!!). With the addition of fresh berries, the original Fannie Farmer recipe becomes the BEST cobbler you will ever taste! And by ‘taste’, I mean DEVOUR.
While I divided the recipe into individual serving-size portions, it can just as easily be made in a shallow baking dish. Enjoy!
INDIVIDUAL BLACKBERRY COBBLERS
Makes: 4 servings
2 cups fresh blackberries
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup finely granulated sugar
1 large egg, beaten
1/2 cup reduced-fat milk
1/2 cup butter + extra for greasing
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit (200 degrees Celsius). Grease four 6-ounce ramekins with butter.
Rinse blackberries and pat dry. Set aside.
In a medium-sized mixing bowl, sift flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. In a separate bowl, mix the egg, milk and melted butter. Stir gently into the flour mixture to combine.
Place a layer of blackberries in the bottom of each ramekin. Spoon a layer of batter over the berries, repeating this process until the ramekin is full (I like to add several berries to the top of the final batter layer). Transfer ramekins to a rimmed baking sheet lined with aluminum foil.
Bake in preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes (cobbler topping should begin to brown lightly at the edges). Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.
One of the first things I do come summertime – other than running for nature and stuffing my face full of s’mores (see previous post) – is digging through my garage in feverish search of my ice cream maker. My beloved, trusty, kick-ass ice cream maker. And hallelujah – IT’S BEEN FOUND!
I have so many recipes for ice cream stuffed in my recipe box, it’s absurd. Toasted Coconut. Pumpkin Pie. Blueberry Cheesecake. Peach and Pecan. Key Lime Pie. Come hell or high water, I WILL make each and every one of them. But to kick off the summer of ’15, I’m going with a classic. Okay, a classic with a twist: Roasted Strawberry.
I know what you’re thinking.
“ROASTED strawberry?? Who ROASTS their strawberries?”
Well, I do. And Zoe Bakes, from whom I got this amazing recipe. There are a lot of strawberry ice cream recipes on the Internet – and I do mean A LOT – but this is where it’s at if you’re looking for a fresh, intense strawberry flavor. Roasting the berries really brings out their natural juices, and doesn’t require a great deal of extra time or effort. And even if it did (it doesn’t – seriously), it’s crazy delicious. I am having the hardest time keeping my ice cream-loving paws out of it – I guarantee you’ll feel the same! Enjoy 🙂
ROASTED STRAWBERRY ICE CREAM
Yields: 16 servings
2 1/2 cups heavy cream
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 large vanilla bean, scraped
1 cup + 2 tbsp granulated sugar
10 egg yolks
3/4 pound fresh strawberries
1 tbsp aged balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp light corn syrup
Heat the heavy cream, milk, vanilla bean and 1 cup of sugar in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. [Note: the longer you let this mixture sit, the stronger the vanilla flavor will be. I often bring the mixture to a simmer, turn off the heat and let it steep for an hour or so. Before you continue with the recipe, you will need to bring it back to a simmer.]
Whisk together the yolks in a medium sized bowl. Remove the cream mixture from the heat and whisk a small amount of the cream into the egg mixture. Add enough cream to warm the eggs.
Once the eggs are warm, add them back into the pot of remaining cream.
Use a rubber spatula to gently stir the custard over low heat. Continue stirring until the mixture starts to thicken.
When the custard seems to be getting thicker, lift the rubber spatula and run your finger through it. It is done when the custard clings to the spatula.
Strain the custard through a fine mesh strainer to a shallow dish. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and immediately place in the refrigerator.
Allow the custard to “ripen” for 6 to 12 hours for the best result. The custard will be quite thick once it has chilled.
While the custard is chilling, roast the strawberries. Remove tops and toss the berries with balsamic vinegar and remaining 2 tablespoons sugar. Lay them out on a nonstick silicone mat-covered baking sheet (make sure you use one with sides, as the juices will over-run the sheet). Place the sheet in the oven, turn it on to 300°F, and slowly roast berriesuntil they have given up their juices and are slightly mushy looking. Their color will also be darker. This will take approximately 30 to 45 minutes depending on the size of the fruit.
Scoop the fruit and all of its sugars into a bowl. Add the corn syrup to the fruit; it will add sweetness, but will keep the ice cream a silky smooth texture.
If you like small chunks of fruit in your ice cream, use a potato masher to crush the berries. If you prefer a smoother ice cream, you can puree the berries with an immersion blender. Chill the berries until they are very cold.
When the custard base is sufficiently chilled, add the berries. Freeze according to your ice cream maker’s instructions.
While it is in the machine, place a bowl in the freezer to have ready to scoop the ice cream into. Once the ice cream is frozen to a soft-serve consistency, scoop it into the frozen bowl and place it in the freezer for a couple of hours to firm up.