Raspberry pavlova ice cream
I like to freeze this classic combination in a non-stick loaf tin lined with baking paper. Once frozen, I lift it out and cut it into slices.
300g double cream
300g Greek yogurt
150g icing sugar
1 box ready-made meringues (about 6), broken into bite-sized pieces
Tip two thirds of the raspberries into a jug and pulse with a stick blender until smooth. Hang a sieve over a bowl and pour in the puree, pushing through with the back of a spoon. Discard pips.
Add double cream, yogurt and icing sugar to a mixing bowl and whisk until forming stiff peaks. You can do this with a whisk, electric beaters or food mixer. Pour in the pipless raspberry puree and mix. Add to a deep-sided container and freeze. Follow the instructions for freezing in the sorbet recipe overleaf, or use an ice cream machine.
Once the ice cream is frozen semi-solid, gently fold through most of the meringue pieces and the whole raspberries, keeping a few raspberries and bits of meringue to decorate the top. Pour into a container, scattering the remaining meringue and raspberries over before putting in the freezer to set solid.
Blackberry & apple sorbet
ICE CREAM MACHINES: BUYING GUIDE
If you want to invest in an ice cream machine, there are two main types to choose from...
1 Freezer bowl
These consist of a bowl that you put in the freezer for 12-24 hours beforehand with an electric paddle attachment that churns the ice cream mixture in the frozen bowl. This is the budget end of the market and you can get one for a relatively affordable £50 or less.
They are usually small and don’t take up
a lot of room in you kitchen, but you need
to plan ahead – which makes them hopeless for impromptu ice-cream making.
They are not a good choice for anyone wanting to make more than one batch at
a time as they need refreezing overnight before you can use them again.
2 Built-in freezer
These use a very convenient electric-powered chilling function to thicken your ice cream as it churns, so you don’t need to plan ahead.
However, they are quite a bit more expensive – some brands cost well over £300 – and are probably only worth investing in if you are a serious and regular ice-cream maker.
They are also bulky, so if you have limited space you may find storing one tricky, especially in the winter when you probably won’t be using it much.
or... stand mixers
Some stand mixers – such as the Kenwood Chef, or Kitchen Aid – have ice-cream making attachments that you can buy separately.
If you have one of these mixers, these accessories might be worth investigating.
As with all kitchen appliances, do your research thoroughly to make sure you are getting the functions you want.
& Vanilla Ripple
This ice cream is really rich and creamy. Condensed milk is the secret ingredient that creates a fabulous smooth texture even without breaking down the ice crystals as it freezes. With no need for pulsing with a stick blender or churning in an ice cream maker, this is a quick but luxurious recipe. Arrowroot powder is a thickening starch from a tropical plant that is tasteless and clear when cooked, so it’s great for thickening the blackcurrant sauce to a good consistency. Find it in the baking aisle of the supermarket.
3 tbsp granulated sugar
2 tbsp water
1 tbsp arrowroot
600ml double cream
1 x 370ml condensed milk
1 tsp best quality vanilla paste or extract
You can make the blackcurrant sauce ahead of time – up to three days – and store in the fridge. Tip the blackcurrants into a saucepan and add the sugar and water. Set over a low heat and cover loosely with a lid. Simmer for around 10 minutes, until the fruit is soft. Meanwhile, mix the arrowroot to a paste with a tablespoon of water in a small glass. Pour into the softened blackcurrants, stirring constantly over a low heat for a minute or so until the fruit has thickened.
Hang a sieve over a bowl and pour the blackcurrants in, using the back of a spoon to push as much sauce through as possible through the sieve. Discard pips.
Once the blackcurrant is cold, make the vanilla base. Add the cream, condensed milk and vanilla extract to a large mixing bowl and whisk until thick and creamy. Pour in the blackcurrant sauce and, using a big metal spoon, very lightly swirl through the vanilla cream. As this ice cream needs no churning, you can put it straight into the serving container. I like to use a glass bowl to show off the blackcurrant ripples.
Blackberry & apple sorbet
Using golden syrup instead of granulated sugar gives a softer texture to this smooth, fruity sorbet. Blackberries that you pick yourself in the hedgerow taste far more intense than the big fat ones you buy in the shops, so I would urge you to make this sorbet when the wild blackberries are in season, which can be early to mid-August if the summer has been kind.
1kg cooking apples (about 3 large ones)
Juice of 1 lemon
125g golden syrup
Peel, core and chop the apples and drop them into a saucepan, along with the blackberries and lemon juice. Weigh in the syrup, set over a low heat and allow to cook until the fruit is really soft, stirring from time to time. Remove from the heat and puree until really smooth with a stick blender or liquidiser. Pass the puree through a medium-fine sieve to remove the pips. Set the puree aside to go completely cold - spreading out into a shallow tray will speed this process along considerably.
Once the puree is cold, scoop it into a deep-sided tub and put in the freezer. After an hour in the freezer, remove the tub and pulse the semi-liquid sorbet with a stick blender to break up the ice crystals.
Return to the freezer for a further hour, then repeat step 2. The sorbet will eventually take around six hours, or even overnight, to freeze. If you have time, repeat blend once or twice more before finally leaving well alone to freeze solid. Simply put, the more you whizz it up as it freezes, the smaller the ice crystals will become, and the smoother and silkier the final sorbet will be.
If you have an ice-cream maker (see previous column) then freeze your sorbet according to the manufacturer's instructions.
Who doesn’t enjoy a big bowl of ice cream on a hot summer’s day? It has never been easier to buy good quality ice cream – but if you want slightly unusual flavours, or genuine bits of fruit in your scoopful, you are quite simply better off making your own.
It’s remarkably easy and often cheaper than buying a luxury brand in the shops, especially if you make the most of cheap, seasonal fruit. August is a peak time for juicy berries, and I can think of no better way to eat them. One of the joys of homemade ice creams and sorbets is that you know exactly what’s going in – no additives or stabilisers, just a few good ingredients turned into something delicious and refreshing.
Before you decide not to go any further because you don’t have an ice-cream machine, I’d like to point out it is quite possible to make amazing ice cream without one. Indeed, all three recipes below were tested by hand using a stick blender both to puree the fruit and churn as it freezes. While I do have a cheap and cheerful Magimix freezer bowl ice-cream maker (bought nearly two decades ago), I don’t use it very often, as I invariably forget to pre-freeze it. The stick-blender method that I’ve used in these recipes is a good option in a low-gadget kitchen. If you don’t have stick blender, you can get away with beating it by hand, but these blenders are such useful little things (and very cheap) to have in your kitchen that I’d urge a small investment.
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