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Afters.

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Crimson cherries.

I’m not really a dessert person.

That is not to say that I never eat dessert. I would rather have a starter and a main, than a main and a dessert. I do, however, sometimes order a little somethin’ sweet when we go out, but then it has to be an unusual dessert, something you won’t make and eat at home. Or when we are invited for dinner, I’ll have dessert.

At home I’ve got tons of recipes, and I’ve tried a lot of them, but I normally make my “go to’s”, of which there is a handful.

At Christmas I thought I’ll make a little bit more of an effort, and since we have seriously hot weather over December, and I’ve canned some cherries shortly before, I searched for a good old fashioned ice cream recipe. I do not have an ice cream maker, but I decided to give a traditional recipe a try anyway.

And we were all glad I did! It came out beautifully, and was an absolute hit with the cherries. I took it out of the freezer when it was more than halfway frozen, and whisked it all up until smooth again, and put it back to freeze. It was possibly not quite as smooth as it would have been had I used an ice cream maker, but it was good enough for us!

Cherries and ice cream.

Unfortunately not the best picture I’ve ever taken, but I was probably in a hurry to start eating! Or blame it on the champagne, I don’t mind! 😉

The recipe I used was from Pinterest, from the blog of homemadefoodjunkie.com. I tweaked it for countries that use the metric system.

VANILLA BEAN ICE CREAM

Ingredients

  • 500 ml whole milk
  • 500 ml heavy cream
  • 250 ml granulated sugar
  • 1.5 ml salt
  • 1 whole vanilla bean-halved and seeds scraped
  • 5 large egg yolks
  • 7.5 ml pure vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. In a large pot whisk together milk, cream, half of the sugar, salt and the scraped vanilla bean, including the pod. Bring the mixture just barely to a boil whisking constantly. Remove from heat and set aside.
  2. Next combine the yolks and remaining sugar in a separate medium bowl with an electric mixer on low, until yolks are thick and pale yellow.
  3. Add about 1/3 of the milk mixture slowly into the yolks, whisking constantly. Add another 1/3 of the milk mixture and whisk until blended. Add remaining milk mixture into the yolks and mix.
  4. Return it all to the pot and set on low heat.
  5. With a wooden spoon, stir the pot until it thickens slightly and coats the back of the spoon. Be careful not to boil it! (You will end up with scrambled eggs instead of custard.)
  6. The thickening process should take just a few minutes.
  7. Pour the custard mixture through a fine mesh strainer (discard the vanilla pod) and bring down to room temperature. Stir in the vanilla extract. Cover and refrigerate 1 to 2 hours or overnight – until THOROUGHLY chilled to refrigerator temperature!
  8. Follow your ice cream mixer directions and freeze until soft set. Five minutes before the mixer is done churning add in your favorite nuts, berries and candies as desired.
  9. Freeze finished ice cream for several hours or until it’s hardened to your desired consistency.

And of course, if you are very industrious, you could make a pavlova with the egg whites left over from the ice cream, which I actually did this time! Yay me! But I forgot to take a picture… 🤦🏼‍♀️ I love pavlova with cream and fresh fruit (strawberries this time) – the combination of the sweet meringue, with the rich cream and slightly sour fruit is a winner every time. We had the pav on Christmas eve, and the cherries and ice cream after lunch on Christmas day.

Do you have a sweet tooth or not? And what is your favourite dessert?

Softly, softly…

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I decided to go easy on you today. To tread, oh, so softly, softly…

I am ecstatic that my tomatoes are doing so well!! Remember my earlier post about my garden? Well, I’ve been picking some tomatoes – organic, pesticide free – regularly for more than a week (probably more than 2 weeks already, time goes by so quickly!), and new baby ones keep appearing on the vines. Happy me! 😀 (See, not grumpy and asking uncomfortable questions all the time… 😉 ) I’ve started putting some shade netting over them, to save them from the birds.

My heirloom ‘Oxheart’ tomatoes.
My thriving tomato plants. Can you see all the green ones?

Still on the subject of food – something that is very dear to my heart 😉 – today I canned, or tried to can, some cherries. We bought two boxes, and I’m worried that they are going to go off quicker than we can eat them, so for the first time ever, I did some canning! We will find out soon if it was a successful endeavour or not. Now I just need to make some lovely vanilla ice cream to have with the cherries on Christmas day…

Cherrieeeeeees!

I have also started looking at a Christmas menu. I know, I know, I left it a bit late! But that’s just me. We do have a ham already, and there are the cherries and ice cream. So, I have to still fill in the rest. Soon, soon…

Enjoy your Friday – I know in big parts of the world it is not Friday anymore – and your weekend, if we don’t chat again soon.