Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Bay leaf ice cream

Yesterday was a rare dinner fail—the falafel wouldn't fry and the pitas wouldn't puff. Turns out you can still make a little salad (with shredded cabbage, julienned green beans, cucumber half-moons, quartered cherry tomatoes, minced garlic, and lemon juice), jab it into a mound of warm bready something that was supposed to be a pita, and shove in some feta and yogurt (mixed with a bit more lemon juice and some dried oregano and fennel seeds). If you eat that at 10:30pm it will at least ease your low-blood-sugar-aggravated annoyance that the rest of dinner didn't work. It even tastes pretty good if you weren't expecting something else.

But I digress. The bay leaf ice cream, which I started earlier in the evening when food still worked, turned out just how it was supposed to: very herbal and very rich. Rich enough that you only want a couple spoonfuls, and herbal enough that each of those bites is a lingering, thoroughly satisfying experience. Bonus points for looking nice in tiny glassware.

2 c cream
1/2 c 1% milk
6 fresh bay leaves
generous drizzle honey
pinch salt
1/2 c sugar
3 egg yolks (reserve the whites for cocktails)

Heat the cream, milk, bay leaves, honey, and salt in a saucepan over very low heat for about an hour. Meanwhile, whisk together the sugar and egg yolks. Discard the bay leaves. Whisk part of the cream mixture into the egg yolk mixture to temper, then mix the egg yolk mixture into the saucepan. Heat over medium-low until thickened, stirring constantly. Strain into a bowl and put in the fridge for a few hours. Churn in the ice cream maker for about 25 minutes. (I'm not sure why this took longer than usual, maybe because it was a small quantity so it took longer for the paddle to do its thing?)

ps that's bay simple syrup in the background and in the cocktails

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