Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Summer just isn’t summer without Strawberry Ice cream!

look forward to June and July every year because it is strawberry season in Ontario. I haunt the markets waiting for strawberries to arrive. I buy as many strawberries as I can eat and then as many as I can freeze for the luxury of having strawberry ice cream all summer long.

This is a great recipe and although you don’t have to use organic cream, milk and sugar it is well worth the price because the taste and texture is amazingly delicious. What those dairy cows eat makes a very big difference in the taste of their milk. If you’ve never tried organic milk products this is the recipe to get you started. You’ll never look back. If you can find a dairy that is not organic but practices sustainable farming, go for it. Just because they don’t have the paper to say they are organic should not stop you. Often these farms have been in the same family for generations and have practiced ethical production.

I know you’re looking at the ingredients and you see condensed milk. Organic condensed milk is available but hard to find so if you find it use it. I don’t adhere to a strictly organic diet, frankly I couldn’t afford it but I do my best. Using condensed milk in this case allows you to skip the step of making a custard which is the traditional method for making ice cream and gelato.

Follow the instructions for your ice cream machine. The best home machines are those with a container insert that rises on all sides but there are others that only cover the bottom that will do just fine if you keep the container in the freezer all the time. The amount of time to make the ice cream varies from 30 to 45 minutes depending on the machine. The ice cream will still be quite soft when it is removed from the machine and placed in the containers. What the ice cream maker does is aerate the mixture. That is how the lightness and volume is achieved.

If you don’t have an ice cream machine you can do it by hand. I have done it but be prepared to spend at least 12 hours going into the freezer to aerate the mixture by hand! The end product will be more dense but still delicious.

Enjoy!

Strawberry Ice Cream
Yield: approximately 2 x 750ml

Ingredients
1 can (300 mls) sweetened condensed milk
3 organic eggs
¼ cup white sugar or organic finely milled sugar
¼ cup dark organic brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup organic whole milk (un-homogenized if you can find it)
2 cups organic 35% cream (whipping cream)
pinch of sea salt
1lb fresh strawberries

Method
1. In a large mixing bowl whisk two eggs, add 1 can of sweetened condensed milk and whisk together until thoroughly mixed.
2. Add both sugars and again mix thoroughly.
3. Place the strawberries in a blender or food processor on low until you have a rough puree. Don’t leave large pieces if strawberries as these will be too hard when frozen and difficult to bite on.
4. Add the remaining ingredients and mix well.
5. Chill the mixture in the refrigerator for about four hours. This step achieves two outcomes: the first is the flavours will meld and the mixture will be cold enough to start the aerating process faster when place in the ice cream machine.
6. Pour the mixture into the ice cream maker and process about 30-45 minutes or until it has almost doubled in volume.
7. When done put the ice cream in 2 (750 ml) containers and place in the freezer until frozen.


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