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Squashy Nipples
Aug 18, 2007

Participation thread: Make something yummy with seasonal berries/fruit, and post it here.

You don't have to share the recipe, juts posting pics is fine.

To continue a conversation we were having in the chat thread, where I live, berries are really good right now. I've been enjoying some really good raspberries and cherries. And Maine blueberries will be arriving soon!

Of course, the best thing to do with fresh berries is to stuff them in your face. But after a few pounds of fresh ripe cherries, I got slightly more creative... ice cream! I've been experimenting with cornstarch-thickened ice cream base lately... it's somewhat of a mid-way point between no-cook and cooked custard recipes, in that it requires some cooking. Think of it as the ice cream version of a quick fudge made with marshmallow Fluff.

I generally prefer to make a cooked base for ice cream, but a lot of fresh berry recipes are raw, to preserve the berry flavor. But cherries need some cooking to get the juice going... So I stole a few bits from a few different recipes, did some tinkering, and came up with a recipe designed to only cook the berries once. It's a pretty tolerant recipe, and it doesn't require a candy thermometer or tempering eggs, so I've dubbed it: Squashy's Foolproof Cherry Ice Cream.

The cornstarch-thickened recipes I've seen all lack eggs, and I think this is a great use for that base, as the the lack of eggs really lets the cherry flavor shine.

Squashy posted:

Squashy's Foolproof Cherry Ice Cream

1 pound of fresh bing cherries, pitted and halved (or quartered)
(about 2 1/4 - 2 1/2 cups)
1/2 cup sugar
1-2 tsp of fresh lemon juice

2 cups heavy cream
1 cup whole milk
(or 3 cups Half and Half*)

1 TB cornstarch
1/4 cup sugar
1 TB light corn syrup
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp almond extract

The best option is to churn the ice cream the following day, so you can chill the base and the cherries overnight in the fridge. However, if you want to churn the ice cream immediately, you can cool the base in an ice bath, which will take you about 30 minutes or so. The cherries are added to the ice cream last, and they need to be at least fridge-temperature before you mix them in, so if you are going to use an ice bath, you'll need to put the cherries in the freezer to get them cold enough in time.

1. In a sauce pan, heat cherries and 1/2 cup sugar, and bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the cherries are soft and have broken down slightly, 6-8 minutes. Strain the cherries into a 2-quart bowl, reserving the liquid.
(bowl needs to be large enough to hold the final batch, use a metal bowl if you are going to use an ice bath)

2. Transfer the cherries to a small bowl, stir in the lemon juice, cover and refrigerate. (freezer, if you are going to ice bath the base)

3. In a small bowl, mix cornstarch with 2-3 tablespoons of the milk to make a slurry.

4. Add heavy cream, milk, 1/4 cup sugar, corn syrup and salt to the sauce pan and stir over medium-high heat. Bring to a rolling boil, and cook for 5 minutes.

5. Remove from the heat and gradually whisk in the cornstarch slurry. Bring the mixture back to a boil over medium-high heat, cook and stir until slightly thickened, 1-2 minutes. Remove from the heat.

6. Wisk almond extract into reserved cherry syrup.

7. Pouring the hot base through a strainer, wisk the base into cherry syrup.

8. Chill base overnight in the fridge or in an ice bath.

9. Churn. Add in chopped cherries a few minutes before the end of cycle (when the ice cream has solidified, but it isn't fully frozen yet).

Makes about 5 cups (depends on churning method/equipment)

*Substituting Half and Half for the Cream and Milk:

Based off the information printed on the cartons, my recipe had 168 grams of milk fat (2 cups heavy cream, 1cup of whole milk). Three cups of Half and Half have about 72 grams of fat, so substituting Half and Half reduces the fat content by over 50%.

I tried it with this recipe, and the results are great, it's still plenty creamy. And a lot cheaper, too: I can buy 4 cups of LandOLakes Half and Half at CostCo for $1.79, whereas two cups of heavy cream from my local super market costs $2.99.

The Oxo Cherry Pitter made this part a lot less work then it could have been:

And now here comes the woman with the good camera:

The final results were amazing, a lovely cherry flavor and creamy texture. As I mentioned in my ICSA, I don't miss the eggs at all in this recipe. The cherries were just a little chewy, and a touch sour, with big cherry taste. Great colors, too.

Squashy Nipples fucked around with this message at Jun 26, 2015 around 15:40


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