Worth a try

This ice cream recipe just squeaked into Fine Cooking’s June/July issue, nestled in an ad all the way at the very end. I almost missed it.

I had all the ingredients on hand other than the jam, and I had things to make the jam, so that’s what I did. It was 2 cups (frozen) blueberries and 1/2 cup sugar in a little pot over medium heat. After it boiled, I cooked it for about 20 minutes, then added 2 teaspoons of whiskey and a teaspoon of vanilla before cooling it to use in the ice cream.


I have an ice cream maker, but I’ve wanted to try a no-churn recipe and this one seemed promising. I don’t have a food processor, however, so I used a mixer and everything went just fine. I cut back on the salt in the ice cream, but I think I’ll cut back even more next time to about 1/4 teaspoon. Also, I substituted mascarpone cheese for the cream cheese, because I like mascarpone better.

I get my lavender from Harney and Sons, and I use it in cooking all the time. Once you have it around, it’s easy to toss into something when you want an aromatic that’s dry, somewhat high-pitched, but with a hint of woody gravitas, and is fairly pungent. Any time I’d use thyme and fennel seed together, I also use lavender as kind of a bridge between the two, smoothing it all into an ombré effect. I’ll also use it with thyme and sage, I think that works nicely. In this recipe, steeping the lavender flowers in the cold cream overnight yielded such a beautiful and mild floral flavor, not soapy or screechy at all like it sometimes can be in desserts.

The texture of this ice cream is a little different than usual, but it’s fun and tastes nice and is extremely rich. You should get plenty of mileage out of a batch.