Monday 6 August 2007

Recipe: Fig Ice Cream

Elizabeth David would have reduced this recipe to the following pithy two-liner: "make a vanilla custard, add a tablespoon of rum and half a dozen peeled figs, and churn in the normal way". Although in general a fan of brevity, I'm not convinced that La David didn't intimidate as much as encourage budding cooks by this kind of sweeping, rather grande-dame approach - for some people, she managed to make of the word 'normal' a complete no-go area!
In this instance, though, she'd be largely correct; the recipe really is as simple as that. Herewith the pithy two-liner slightly teased out.......

Ingredients: 1.5 cups of Milk; 0.75 cup of Cream; 0.5 teaspoon of Vanilla Essence; 0.5 tablespoon of Dark Rum; 3 Egg Yolks; 0.5 cup of Sugar; 0.5 lb of Fresh Figs.


1. Place Milk, Cream, Vanilla Essence and Rum in a zimmertopf or double boiler, and bring to a simmer. Meanwhile, whisk the Egg Yolks with the Sugar until they 'form the ribbon' as the mixture falls back on itself in the bowl. Pour the simmering liquid over the Egg/Sugar mixture and whisk briefly to incorporate, then return this mixture to the zimmertopf or double boiler and heat, stirring occasionally for ten minutes or so until it has noticeably thickened.

2. Meanwhile, peel the figs, removing the outer skin and the pith beneath, and roughly chop them. The flesh should be soft enough that it will get broken up by the paddle of the ice cream machine and will end up distributed evenly throughout the ice cream.

3. Once the custard has thickened slightly, add it to the figs and stir to mix thoroughly. Leave to cool, and then churn in the ice cream machine. It will be quite soft when finished, and so should be stored for several hours in the freezer to firm-up before serving

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I had to watch my husband eat something very similar to this in Gran Canaria, at the restaurant atop the botanic gardens. It was served with a dark chocolate and toasted almond sauce. Fabulous. As are the botanic gardens, if you can find them they are worth a visit.