Monday, August 4, 2014

Summertime Peach Ice Cream

Last weekend I got the urge to make something for dessert that felt quintessentially ‘summery.’  Although I hadn’t decided what this dessert would be, I knew that it had to call for ingredients that are only in-season during the warmer months, not something that could be just as easily whipped up in the winter. Once I laid out the criteria, it took about five seconds to settle on my summer dessert - homemade peach ice cream.  

Fresh peaches have been a summertime favorite of mine since I was a kid and ice cream is a summer no-brainer.  My husband and I came up with the recipe below, and the outcome is beyond either of our expectations.  The rich peach flavor coupled with the sweet cream mixture is everything you could want in a dessert.  And a new go-to summer recipe is made!


Yields: 2 quarts (16 servings)

Time: Preparation 2 hours, ready in 6.5 hours

5 fresh peaches, peeled, pitted, and chopped
3 egg yolks, beaten
2 cups heavy cream
1 cup half-and-half
1 tsp vanilla extract
1¾ cups white sugar
¼ tsp salt

1) In a saucepan, mix together the egg yolks, heavy cream, half-and-half, and vanilla extract on medium heat, stirring often.  Do not allow the mixture to boil.  Once, the mixture is hot, add the sugar and salt to the saucepan, and mix well.  Continue to cook on medium heat for approximately three more minutes so the sugar and salt dissolve, continuing to stir often.  Remove from heat and allow to cool in the saucepan, stirring occasionally to prevent a skin from forming on the surface.  Once cool, strain the mixture into a bowl and cover with plastic wrap so that the plastic wrap touches and lays across the surface of the mixture.  Place in the refrigerator for at least one hour.  (The plastic wrap trick prevents a skin from forming on the surface of the mixture while cooling.)
2) Puree the peaches in a food processor until smooth.  Cool in the refrigerator for an hour.
3) Add the peach puree to the cream mixture, and mix well.  
4) Turn on your stand mixer to the slowest setting and pour the mixture into the frozen ice cream bowl attachment.  Mix until the mixture thickens, or approximately 25 minutes.
5) Transfer the ice cream to a storage container and freeze for at least five hours.  
6) Enjoy a bowl-full (even better with fresh peaches thrown on top) and save the rest for up to two weeks!

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