Toasted Almond and Cherry Ice Cream
From The Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz
Last but not least for our 4th of July series…dessert! Nothing screams America in the Summertime like a big ole bowl of cherries, so that was my inspiration for my latest pick from David Lebovitz’s ice cream bible. And I know I’ve said it before, but I’ll say it again, people are IMPRESSED when you keep home made ice cream on hand. It’s such a ruse, really. You can make it days, weeks, and probably even a month in advance as long as you have a good storage container (HUGE plug for these suckers). Then for a few cents you pick up ice cream cones, and the crowd goes wild! (Especially effective if the crowd includes dogs…)
- 1lb cherries, fresh or frozen, pitted and stems removed
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1 drop almond extract
Ice Cream Base
- 1 cup whole milk
- 3/4 cup sugar
- pinch of salt
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 2 cups whole almonds, toasted, divided
- 5 egg yolks
- 1/4 tsp almond extract
- To make the candied cherries, heat cherries, water, sugar and lemon juice in a large saucepan until the liquid starts to boil.
- Turn the heat down to a low boil and cook the cherries for about 30-35 minutes, stirring frequently to make sure they’re not sticking and clumping together.
- Once the syrup is reduced to the consistency of maple syrup, remove the pan from heat, add the almond extract, and let the cherries cool in their syrup.
- Drain the cherries very well so that the syrup doesn’t muddy the ice cream. You can save the syrup for another use. Coarsely chop the cherries and set aside.
- To make the ice cream base, combine milk, sugar, salt and 1 cup of the cream in a medium saucepan.
- Finely chop 1 cup of the toasted almonds and add to the saucepan.
- Warm the mixture over medium heat, being careful to stop before it boils. Cover and remove from heat. Steep for 1 hour.
- Strain the almond infused milk, reserving the milk. Use a wooden spoon to mash the almonds a bit to get all the flavor out of them. Discard the almonds.
- In large bowl, whisk together the egg yolks. Rewarm the almond infused milk, then SLOWLY pour it into the bowl with the egg yolks, whisking constantly. Return the mixture to the saucepan.
- Cook custard mixture over medium heat, using a flat bottomed wooden spatula to constantly stir and scrape the bottom. Once the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of the spatula, pour it through a strainer into a medium bowl containing the remaining 1 cup cream. Add the almond extract and stir to combine. Chill the mixture in the refrigerator, overnight or at least 8 hours.
- Freeze ice cream in your ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions.
- Coarsely chop the remaining cup of toasted almonds. In the last few minutes of churning, add them to the ice cream base. Once churning is complete, fold in the chopped candied cherries by hand.
Makes about 1 1/2 quarts.