Friday, July 9, 2010

I Scream, You Scream

I don't know about you, but there are few things in this world on a hot day better than homemade soft serve. Maybe ice cold watermelon, but usually ice cream just can't be beat.

Then again, one Thanksgiving Mike's aunt Nancy made a cinnamon ice cream to top pumpkin pie. It was so good, I made myself sick on that stuff. I still dream about it.

Where was I? Oh yeah, hot summer days, a melty cone of the freshest, softest cold stuff you can imagine. Don't forget to put a marshmallow in the bottom of the cone to prevent drips.

Unfortunately, it takes some investment for homemade ice cream: I highly recommend the Cuisinart model, as the brand is great, has excellent customer service, rarely breaks down, and comes with a fairly foolproof recipe booklet that covers all your basics and then some. Of course, I could also have used the KitchenAid ice cream maker attachment, but I just didn't think about it.

But consider the benefits to homemade ice cream: you know exactly what's going in there. You know there are no preservatives, no weird hormones, just what you put in the pot and nothing else. And really, I don't think you can buy ice cream that tastes as good as you can make it.

Because I happened to have a bunch in the fridge that were about to go bad, the first batch I made was strawberry. I followed the Cuisinart recipe rather closely, and oh my, it was F.I.N.E. fine. The only difference is that I blended the strawberries in a blender with the lemon juice to make a more smooth cream and a more fun pink color. Will have to make some for Mike's buddy Karl when he comes to visit.

3 cups fresh ripe strawberries, stemmed and sliced
4 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1-1/2 cup sugar, divided
1-1/4 cups whole milk
2-3/4 cups heavy cream
1-1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

  • In a small bowl, combine the strawberries with the lemon juice and 1/2 cup of the sugar.
  • Stir gently and allow the strawberries to macerate in the juices for 2 hours.
  • Strain the berries, reserving juices.
  • Mash or purée half the berries.
  • In a medium mixing bowl, use a hand mixer on low speed to combine the milk and remaining granulated sugar until the sugar is dissolved, about 1 to 2 minutes.
  • Stir in the heavy cream, reserved strawberry juice, mashed strawberries, and vanilla.
  • Turn the machine on; pour the mixture into freezer bowl, and let mix until thickened, about 20 to 25 minutes.
  • Five minutes before mixing is completed, add the reserved sliced strawberries and let mix in completely.
  • The ice cream will have a soft, creamy texture.
  • If a firmer consistency is desired, transfer the ice cream to an airtight container and place in freezer for about 2 hours.
  • Remove from freezer about 15 minutes before serving.


Jess said...

Great blog! Makes me want an icecream maker!


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