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Bonnie Aeschliman: We’ll all scream for this homemade strawberry ice cream

  • Published Tuesday, May 21, 2013, at 10:18 p.m.

FRESH CHURNED STRAWBERRY ICE CREAM

Chill the cream mixture completely before adding the pureed berries. If berries are added to the warm mixture, it is likely to curdle the cream.

Makes 11/2 quarts.

1 cup whole milk

1 cup heavy cream

1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar, divided use

3 tablespoons corn syrup

2 eggs

1 pound frozen unsweetened strawberries, thawed (or 4 cups fresh)

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

In a heavy 2-quart saucepan, heat milk, cream and 2 tablespoons sugar until very hot but not boiling. Meanwhile, beat eggs with electric mixer until light and lemon colored. Temper eggs by whisking about a cup of the hot milk mixture into the eggs, then pour egg mixture back into saucepan. Cook until mixture becomes very hot (165 degrees) but not boiling. Strain into a clean container and cool; refrigerate several hours.

Meanwhile, puree strawberries with electric blender or food processor. Stir in lemon juice, corn syrup and remaining sugar. Stir berry mixture into chilled cream mixture.

Pour cooled mixture into ice cream freezer container and freeze according to manufacturer’s instructions. Transfer to freezer container, cover and chill in freezer up to 4 hours to allow flavors to ripen.

THE WICHITA EAGLE — May 22, 2013

Recently I visited with executive chef Paul Freimuth at the Hyatt and toured his elaborate kitchen. What amazed me most was the technology he uses for freezing homemade ice cream.

He explained how, with a huge canister of liquid nitrogen, he can make ice cream to order for his customers in a minute or two. Liquid nitrogen vaporizes at such a low temperature, it flash-freezes the mixture almost instantly. That prevents the water from forming large ice crystals and gives ice cream a very velvety texture.

This method is not available for the home cook. But we do have electric ice cream makers that will churn a fresh batch in about 20 minutes. Many models do not even require ice, so we can have homemade ice cream, gelato and sorbets without much effort.

Although I embrace our modern conveniences, I recall another time when ice cream was really special. Making ice cream at home was a big event on the farm during warm summer days. This exciting experience made its debut on Memorial Day, then off and on during the summer right up to Labor Day.

Why was it only a summer experience? Probably because it was no small feat to make it. Once Mama decided it was time for ice cream, she would save extra milk and cream from the morning milking. Although it did not take her long to stir together the custard and chill it, next came a trip to town to purchase a block of ice. Once back home, the fun began. The 25-pound chuck of ice did not come neatly cubed in a plastic bag but had to be crushed. So, outdoors, with the ice block tucked inside a gunny sack, my dad crushed it with the sledge hammer.

We always churned the ice cream outside, sitting in a lawn chair under a big shade tree. My siblings and I shared the work of cranking the mixture; turning at a slow speed created the creamiest ice cream. When the mixture was nearly frozen, turning the crank became more difficult. That’s when my dad would take charge and finish it. The payoff came when the dasher was removed and we sampled what we had created. The bucket was packed down in the ice with more salt to “ripen” for an hour or so. Most likely, if we did not have company when we started the project, we would ask some of the neighbors over to visit over big bowls of ice cream.

Holding with my family’s tradition, I will be making homemade ice cream for our Memorial Day celebration. Being a modern gal now, I will use my electric ice cream maker.

Either way you churn it, you will find my Strawberry Ice Cream delicious.

Bonnie Aeschliman is a certified culinary professional who owns Cooking at Bonnie’s Place in Wichita. For more information, call 316-425-5224 or visit cookingatbonnies.com. To submit a question to Bonnie, e-mail her at bonnie@cookingatbonnies.com.

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