I have this tendency to believe that dessert doesn’t count unless it includes chocolate. I originally made strawberry basil ice cream, and while it was delicious, I just felt that it was missing, well, chocolate. So I tried it again, incorporating the chocolate, stracciatella style, in to the recipe and OH.MY.GOODNESS.YES. … that was what it needed!
The strawberry evokes late springtime, the basil takes me to Italy, and the chocolate gives it a sense of indulgence like having dessert at the end of a hot evening date. So there you go, imagine yourself strolling through Rome or perhaps an Italian garden on a warm springtime evening on a date with your love while eating this ice cream. Works for me.
INGREDIENTS: Makes approximately 1 quart
- 2 Cups Heavy Cream
- 1 Cup Whole Milk
- 3/4 Cup Sugar
- Table Salt
- 1 Cup Basil Leaves, torn and packed
- 5 Large Egg Yolks
- 1 lb Strawberries, chopped
- 1/2 Cup Sugar
- 2 Tbsp Lemon Juice
- 3 Tbsp Vodka
- 4 oz Dark Chocolate
- Candy thermometer (recommended)
- Ice Cream Maker
- In a medium sized heavy saucepan, combine 1 Cup of Heavy Cream, 3/4 Cup Sugar and pinch of Salt. Heat at a medium temperature, stirring occasionally, until the mixture reaches 170 degrees. Remove from heat.
- Stir in Basil. Cover and let sit for 1 hour (more or less depending on how strong you want the Basil flavor).
- Whisk the egg yolks in a medium bowl until they slightly thicken and become lighter in color
- Reheat the cream mixture on medium heat for 1-2 minutes.
- Whisking constantly, slowly pour half of the hot cream mixture into the yolks bowl. Once combined, then whisk the mixed cream and yolks back into the saucepan. Heat once again, stirring constantly, until mixture reaches 180 degrees or coats the back of a spoon. Remove from heat.
- Stir in remaining 1 Cup of Heavy Cream. Pour mixture through a fine mesh strainer into a clean bowl, pressing against the basil leaves with a spatula to extract the flavor.
- Allow mixture to cool to room temperature (you can speed up this process by setting your bowl in a larger bowl filled with ice water).
- Meanwhile, combine Strawberries, 1/2 Cup Sugar and Lemon Juice in small saucepan. Cook over low heat until strawberries are broken down and syrupy, 10-20 minutes. Pour mixture through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl, using a spoon to force as much liquid out as you can. Discard pulp in strainer and set aside to cool.
- Once mixture both the cream mixture and strawberry mixtures have reached room temp, pour the strawberry mixture into the cream mixture and stir until combined. Cover and chill in the refrigerator at least 6 hours or overnight.
- Pour into ice cream maker and churn according to manufacturer’s directions.
- Add 3 Tbsp of Vodka (this helps keep the ice cream soft once it freezes)
- Once the ice cream has churned about 20-25 minutes and appears thickened, melt the Dark Chocolate in a small saucepan.
- Slowly pour melted chocolate in to ice cream maker while it is churning, stopping every few seconds allow the chocolate incorporate itself into the mixture.
- Finish churning (usually another 5-10 minutes). Serve immediately or cover and freeze.