I received an ice cream makerfor Christmas this year, and I knew I wasn't going to set it on my shelf and wait until summer to use it. You might think I was crazy, making ice cream in the middle of winter, but when you get a brand new (and might I mention red and adorable) ice cream maker,not much is going to stop you from using it, especially not a little cold weather that remains outside while you stay toasty and warm inside, curled up with your just-made ice cream drizzled with warm chocolate sauce.
I had seen a recipe in the August issue of Gourmet that I hadn't been able to get out of my head since then. It was for perfect no-cook strawberry ice cream made with only strawberries, sugar, lemon juice, salt, and heavy cream. It looked so creamy and luscious, and I liked that it didn't involve making any sort of custard first. It sounded like the perfect first ice cream choice.
Perfect No-Cook Strawberry Ice Cream (adapted from Gourmet, August 2009)
My steps below vary from the original recipe as I combined instructions that came with my ice cream maker with the recipe's instructions. If you have the same ice cream maker, my version below will work for you. If not, you may need to chill the mixture for a while, as instructed by the Gourmet recipe.
1 lb strawberries, hulled, halved if large
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 cups heavy cream
Make sure to put your ice cream maker bowl in the freezer ahead of time so it is completely frozen when you start this recipe. If you have the space in your freezer, it's best to just store the bowl(s) in there (like I do now) so you can make ice cream on a whim.
Coarsely mash strawberries with sugar, lemon juice, and salt using a potato masher in a large bowl. Let stand, stirring and mashing occasionally, 10 minutes.
Transfer half of strawberry mixture to a blender and purée with cream until smooth. Return strawberry cream to bowl with remaining strawberries, and combine.
Pour mixture in ice cream maker, and run for 25 to 30 minutes or until you have ice cream! (Follow manufacturer's directions if you have a different ice cream maker).
Transfer to an airtight container and put in freezer to firm up further. The ice cream will last for one week, if you can manage to keep it around that long!
How good does this look?
I found the chocolate sauce recipe in Rose's Heavenly Cakes.She calls it Chocolate Snowball Hot Fudge Sauce. It's a mixture of unsweetened chocolate, butter, cocoa powder, sugar, heavy cream, and vanilla extract, and it is just "heavenly." It's the kind of chocolate sauce that firms up slightly and gets just a little tacky as it mingles with the cold ice cream. I don't think I'll ever buy hot fudge in a jar at the store again. This sauce is way to easy to make and way too good.
And clearly the combination of chocolate and strawberry was just fabulous. Who doesn't love chocolate-covered strawberries? The ice cream tastes like real strawberries, not strawberry flavor, and it's just incredibly smooth, creamy, and fresh. It's so much better than anything you could buy at the store. I think I have a new obsession. I've already looked up recipes for vanilla bean, butter pecan, chocolate mint, and brown sugar ice creams. And I haven't even started researching sorbets yet!
Do you have an ice cream maker? What's your favorite ice cream you've made in it so far? If you don't have an ice cream maker, what's your favorite ice cream or what would you want to make if you had one?