Tuesday, August 31, 2010

What Flavour?

We All Scream For Ice Cream!

The secret is out! There is nothing more delicious than home-made ice cream—and it is surprisingly easy to make. Whether you want to make a yummy batch of fresh strawberry ice cream for the kids or prefer a more sophisticated flavour for an adult dinner party, you will be surprised by how quick the process is and how different it tastes from store-bought varieties. You do not even need an ice cream maker for our recipes. They can all be made in a food processor or with a basic cake mixer and bowl.

Basic Vanilla Ice Cream
500 ml whipping cream *
90 g caster sugar
1-2 tsp (5ml-10ml) vanilla essence or vanilla extract to taste
Note: If you are adding other flavours, reduce the vanilla to a few drops.

1. In a food mixer or bowl, whisk cream, caster sugar and vanilla essence or extract until slightly thickened. It is important not to over-whip the cream. It should still be liquid and runny, just slightly thicker. Taste! If you prefer a sweeter ice cream, you may want to add a little more caster sugar.
2. Transfer the mixture to a shallow plastic storage container and freeze for about two hours.
3. Remove container from freezer and whisk by hand to remove any ice crystals. Do not worry if you forget to do this—the ice cream will still be delicious!
4. Put back in freezer until firm.
5. Remove 15 minutes before you want to serve.

You can customise this basic vanilla ice cream recipe with your favourite flavours. Here are some ideas to get you started—then, you can create your own secret signature sweets!
For all variations, just follow the basic ice cream recipe to the end of stage 2, remembering to reduce the amount of vanilla.

Fresh Strawberry Ice Cream
350 g strawberries
50 g granulated sugar
60 ml water
1. Put the granulated sugar and water in a pan on a low heat. Stir until the sugar dissolves and boil over low heat for three minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool completely.
2. Place the semi-frozen ice cream, sugar syrup and strawberries in a food processor and pulse briefly until the ingredients are mixed and the strawberries are chopped. If you prefer less sweet ice cream, add the sugar syrup gradually to taste.
3. Return ice cream to the plastic container and freeze until firm.

Mint Chocolate Chip
150 g plain chocolate
5 ml peppermint essence
A few drops of green food colouring (optional)
1. Grate or chip the chocolate (or buy ready-made chocolate chips). Crumbled flake chocolate is also delicious if you are in a hurry, but the milk chocolate flavour is not as strong.
2. Mix the semi-frozen ice cream, chocolate, peppermint essence and colouring, if used, in a food processor and pulse until the ingredients are mixed through.
3. Return to plastic container and freeze until firm.

Chill and enjoy the summer!
*Recipes tested with President or Emborg whipping cream

Find more great ice cream recipes in the Family Flavours August 2010 isuue!

By Linda Decker

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