My love of using Lavender in food and drink just keeps growing and growing. It has become one of my favourite herbs to use. I just love how versatile it is.
So it was with great excitement that I decided to give Lavender Ice Cream a go.
I've tried two different methods of making Lavender Ice Cream and both worked well. One was using lavender caster sugar (good for all year round) and the other was by putting Lavender heads in the custard as it chilled over night.
Ice Cream ...
I use a basic vanilla recipe:
5 egg yolks,
4oz (100g) caster sugar (replace with lavender sugar if not using lavender heads)
1 level tsp cornflour,
3/4 (375ml) pint full fat milk,
3/4 (375ml) double cream,
2-3 teaspoons of vanilla extract (good quality)
12 lavender heads (don't use these if using Lavender sugar)
- Heat the milk gently in a medium pan but don't allow it to boil.
- Whilst the milk is heating mix the egg yolks, cornflour and sugar in a bowl.
- Pour the hot milk into the egg, cornflour and sugar and mix well. Keep the pan.
- Now pour the mixture back into the pan and heat gently, stirring well until it thickens. Don't allow it to boil as this will result in the 'custard' curdling. If it does curdle though, it's not the end of the world as I've made successful ice cream with curdled custard.
- Take of the heat and pour into a bowl that you will be able to fit in your fridge over night. If you're using fresh lavender heads push the heads with the stalks up into the custard mix. When cool put it in the fridge over night or for a few hours until it is very very cold.
... the next day (or a few hours later)
- Add the vanilla essence to the cream and whip until it starts to thicken.
- Take the lavender out of the custard (don't worry if some bits stay behind) and mix the cream into it.
- Now transfer to your ice cream maker and follow the machine instructions.
Ice Cream makers make a soft scoop ice cream that needs to be eaten once made. But you can transfer it into a container and freeze it. Just be aware that this will make a very hard ice-cream, so take it out a good half hour before use.
The left over egg whites are perfect for making meringues with so while the ice cream is churning in the machine whisk your egg whites until stiff and then whisk in, 10oz caster sugar. Make little nests on a baking tray and bake at around 120 degrees (fan oven) for 45 minutes.
Stew down a few handfuls of berries (use fresh or frozen) and add sugar to taste. Blend the mixture and push through a fine sieve to get a gorgeous coulis.
Don't discard the blended pulp. It's still full of flavour and can be added to small tarts, spread on bread or even used to make berry ice cream.
Now you're ready ... enjoy
I was sent the ice cream maker for the purpose of writing this blog post. I am now a home made ice cream addict and expect to see more ice cream posts in the future!