Saturday, July 17, 2010

An update and Ice cream month

I've been updating the shop in bursts for a few days, and last night I finally redid all my listing titles. The old versions were too wordy and it was difficult to keep straight which was which base. Hopefully the more succinct titles will work better.  Let me know what you think!

Picture links to the shop.

Now, on to the sweet, creamy good stuff. Did you know that in the US July is National Ice Cream Month?  I only just found this out.  Not only that, but the third Sunday in July is National Ice Cream Day. That's tomorrow!  So it's very appropriate that I am making ice cream today.  Tomorrow, I'll start the next ice cream giveaway.

But today, my niece and nephew are over and that alone is reason to make ice cream.  I'm using the same recipe I used for the mango ice cream, but I'm using beautiful, ripe peaches instead.

Peach ice cream with cherry topping, in a wine glass so the layers can be seen. It could have been frozen a little longer, but I was impatient.
Recipe chatter below the fold.

One of the benefits of this kind of uncooked ice cream recipe is that it keeps well.  It doesn't get icy when frozen in a home freezer.  The whipped egg white brings a lot of air into the mixture, which helps keep it scoopable. 

It does become too hard to scoop if taken straight out of the freezer after setting overnight or so. However, leaving the container in the refrigerator for an hour or so before serving lets it soften up just enough and it goes back to its previous light texture. This is similar to the way one leaves an ice cream cake in the refrigerator for a while so it becomes soft enough to cut. I like to do this right before dinner, and then the ice cream is scoopable for dessert.

This recipe is endlessly modifiable, but peaches share "favorite fruit" status with cherries for me so I had to try it. I actually like the peach version better than the mango version. Both are delicious, but peach is cleaner on the palate, more tart and refreshing.

Peach Ice Cream with optional cherry topping - makes about a quart
Ice cream:
4 large egg whites (reconstituted pasteurized dehydrated egg whites work if one is concerned about egg safety. Or use meringue powder and reduce the sugar to compensate.)
4tbsp sugar
1.5c ripe peaches (about 3 small), peeled, cut up, and then roughly mashed with a fork.
1c heavy cream (or coconut milk)
1tsp lemon juice (opt)
an additional teaspoon or so of sugar (opt)

Cut up the peaches in advance and let them chill for at least an hour or so. This will help the final mixture freeze more quickly.  If the peaches are firm, it may be necessary to blanch them before removing the skin. If they will not squash easily with a fork, chop the pieces small and then mix with the lemon juice and an extra teaspoon or so of sugar depending on the sweetness of the fruit.  Let the mixture rest in the refrigerator for a couple hours until it softens.

Beat the egg whites until frothy and then add the 4tbsp of sugar. Whip until stiff peaks form.

Mix the cream into the peaches and then fold that mixture into the egg whites. 

Churn the ice cream as usual. It is a light mixture that freezes relatively quickly and may need scraping down at times.

Cherry topping:
1c canned sour cherries (sweetened)
1tbsp sugar (optional, if it's not sweet enough)
1tsp corn starch
1/2tsp almond extract (optional)

Drain the cherries into a saucepan and reserve the fruit to one side.  Mix the corn starch with the sugar and syrup until smooth and cook over medium heat until the corn starch turns translucent and thickens and the mixture boils.  Take of the heat and add the fruit back in. Stir in the almond extract if desired and let cool before serving over ice cream.  For a hot topping, heat the fruit through before adding the almond extract and serve immediately.

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