We love ice cream, so much so that we got ice cream almost every Sunday, after our long runs, during the peak of marathon training. We made lots of runs to Culvers and Dairy Queen and some stops at the grocery store. We tried to use coupons as often as possible and lamented our lack of an ice-cream maker at home.
I changed all that a couple weeks ago. I tossed out the notion that one needs an ice-cream maker (or similar attachments for a stand mixer) and used the kitchen gadgets at hand—namely a whisk, the freezer and a food processor. And I made an ice cream that you could swear was made the old fashioned way.
Strawberry soymilk ice cream
Adapted from Food.com
This ice cream is sweet, creamy and refreshing. It uses vanilla soymilk, although any kind of milk would suffice, and fresh strawberries to create a rich yet fresh and summery treat.
4 egg yolks
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon cornstarch
2 cups vanilla soymilk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup chopped/sliced strawberries, fresh or frozen
In a large mixing bowl, combine the egg yolks, sugar and cornstarch; whisk them together until the mixture is thick and gooey.
In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the soymilk and vanilla extract and heat the milk until it just starts to steam; do not bring it to a boil.
Remove the milk from the heat and slowly pour it into the egg-sugar mixture; whisk vigorously to temper the egg yolks and create a smooth ice cream base.
Let the mixture cool a bit, maybe 15 minutes, just long enough to take the harsh heat out of it.
Fit a large plastic zipper bag over a wide-mouth jar or storage container and carefully pour the ice cream base into the bag.
Carefully push out as much air as possible and seal the bag. Place the bag in the freezer and freeze until it is solid. (I let mine freeze for almost 24 hours.)
When you are ready to make ice cream, remove the bag from the freezer and empty the ice cream base into the bowl of a food processor fitted with a blade. Pulse the mixture until the chunks break up a bit, then add in the strawberries and process the mixture until the strawberries are well incorporated and the ice cream is smooth, about 3-5 minutes.
Empty the ice cream into a plastic storage container and place it in the freezer; freeze it until it is solid enough to scoop with an ice-cream scoop. (I let mine re-freeze for about 4 hours.)
I really love this ice cream. Christopher loved it, too. We topped our dishes with chopped chocolate-peanut butter candies.
The ice cream is sweet but not too sweet and creamy but not too rich, more like a gelato than a custard. The strawberries add a hint of tartness and freshness that is perfect for warm summer evenings.
The base—the egg yolks, sugar, cornstarch, milk and vanilla mixture—can be doctored up to suit almost any flavor. A couple tablespoons of cocoa powder would make for a lovely chocolate ice cream. A cup of chopped peaches would make for a nice peach ice cream. A couple tablespoons of peanut butter would make a rich peanut butter ice cream. The possibilities are endless!
I hope those of you who feel limited by not having an ice-cream maker try this technique; the freeze-and-process method should work with almost any base recipe, so I hope you try it with your favorite and enjoy some homemade ice cream soon!