We have a fridge! A fridge with a freezer! Which means: it’s high time for the summer’s first batch of homemade ice cream. Beyond high time, if we’re being truthful, as it’s been more than a year since I made a batch of ice cream. And the last batch was a really good one, too, so it didn’t last more than a week. Plus, I consider having enough time to make at least one batch of homemade ice cream per summer to be an essential indicator of sanity.
This particular ice cream is one that I’ve been mulling over for more than 2 years. It’s loosely based on this incredible Strawberry Sour Cream Ice Cream, which is still the best ice cream I’ve ever made. Adding cultured dairy products, like sour cream or cheese, to the ice cream base ensures that it is extra thick and sets up really nicely when frozen, which can be a problem with homemade ice creams. Using sour cream or goat cheese also adds a delicious tang to offset the sweetness of the ice cream.
Since I knew that I wanted to try a recipe similar to the original that used goat cheese in place of the sour cream, we get an abundance of blackberries from our bushes every year, and blackberries and goat cheese and red wine are a great combination on a cheese platter, I decided that those three elements were the basis for what was sure to be a delicious dessert. The ice cream base would be a sweet goat cheese custard with a hint of vanilla, and the blackberries and red wine would enter the picture via a sweet and jammy swirl of fruit sauce. I added a splash of balsamic to the blackberry-red wine component for a little extra depth. The result was everything I imagined, and just as good as the strawberry sour cream version. It’s a good thing I made this 2 days before leaving for a week, or it would already be gone.
I also wanted to use this celebration of our new freezer to take a minute to share the first pictures (and progress!) of our new house. When we knew we were buying the house I had grand plans of becoming a design blogger and documenting all the cool DIY updates we did to the house. But, considering that I seem to be barely managing to find the time to be a food blogger, I suppose I should probably stick with what I know for now. So here’s the summary version, at least as far as the kitchen is concerned…
We started with a kitchen that is basically a blank slate: linoleum floors, cheap cabinets that have seen better days, yellow walls, ancient appliances, and plenty of space. Since the day we moved in we have 1) replaced the dishwasher and fridge with modern, stainless steel versions; 2) removed some of the counters and cabinets and replaced them with these sweet industrial DIY pipe shelves; 3) added a temporary kitchen island and stools; 4) refinished one of the walls and repainted it to a dolphiny gray; 5) added an awkwardly bulky washer and dryer that we can’t wait to move to the basement. We’re also in the process of continuing to replace the upper cabinets with shelves to match the pipe shelving, replacing the disposal, and swapping out the kitchen sink and faucet. Where we are now is certainly not our dream kitchen, but we are at least getting to the point where it feels usable and friendly – good enough until we’ve saved up enough to remodel for real. And good enough to make delicious ice cream!
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Goat Cheese Ice Cream with Blackberry Red Wine Swirl
Inspired by the NYTimes. Makes about 1 1/2 quarts.
- 7 egg yolks
- 1 1/3 c. sugar, divided
- 1 1/2 c. heavy cream
- 1/2 c. whole milk
- 8 oz. goat cheese
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 12 oz. fresh blackberries
- 1/3 c. red wine
- 2 TBS balsamic vinegar
- Beat the egg yolks with 1/2 cup of the sugar in a heatproof bowl until smooth. Set aside. Place the heavy cream and whole milk in a medium saucepan and whisk in 1/2 cup of sugar. Whisking regularly, heat the cream mixture over medium heat just until bubbles begin to appear around the sides of the pan. Remove the cream from the heat.
- Slowly drizzle the hot cream into the egg yolks, whisking the egg yolks vigorously as you do so. Once you’ve poured most of the cream into the egg yolks, pour the mixture back into the pan and return to the heat. Whisking constantly, heat the egg yolks until the mixture has thickened into a custard thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, which should take from 5-10 minutes. Remove from the heat.
- Crumble the goat cheese into a large bowl. Strain the custard through a fine-mesh strainer into the bowl (to remove any bits of scrambled egg). Whisk the mixture until the goat cheese has fully melted into the custard. Stir in the vanilla. Let cool to room temperature, then cover the bowl with plastic wrap so that the plastic wrap touches the surface of the custard and refrigerate until cold, at least 3 hours.
- In a medium saucepan, combine the blackberries, the remaining 1/3 c. sugar, the red wine, and the balsamic vinegar. Heat over medium heat, stirring frequently to prevent the bottom from burning, until thickened and bubbly, about 15 minutes. Mash the blackberries with the back of a wooden spoon so that the mixture has a jam like consistency. Refrigerate the mixture until cold.
- To make the ice cream, churn the goat cheese custard in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Scrape half of the ice cream into a storage container in an even layer. Top with half of the blackberry mixture, then drag a knife through the two layers to create a swirl. Repeat with another layer of custard and another layer of blackberries. Freeze until solid, at least 2 hours.