Happy new year everyone! We celebrated the first day of 2017 with a quiet day at home on the farm; a few jobs to do, a monopoly game, naps and now, a movie and these roasted apricot and white chocolate ice creams. The perfect thing to be eating and writing about at this time of year.
Roasted apricot and white chocolate ice creams
Basically a simple vanilla custard layered with pureed roasted apricots then frozen into moulds, they my idea of heaven on these hot summer nights. And as an added bonus – no extra washing up! We had friends over for dinner in the garden a couple of nights ago and had roast chicken, cold potato salad and beans then these for dessert. And just to gild the lily, if you have any of that expensive Persian fairy floss in the house (we had half a packet left over from a recent event at the farm kitchen), wrap your ice cream up in that too. Nice.
1 vanilla bean
1 cup thin cream
2 cups whole milk
1/2 cup caster sugar
4 egg yolks
For the apricots
1kg apricots, halved, stones removed (or any stone fruit or pureed berries).
1/3 cup caster sugar
1/3 cup verjus or lemon juice
250g white chocolate (best quality you can lay your hands on)
1 tbsp coconut oil
For the pureed roasted apricots; Combine all ingredients in a baking tray and roast in a moderate oven (180C) for about 25 minutes or until the fruit is completely soft. Puree and then pop in the fridge to cool.
For the custard; Place the cream and milk in a saucepan. Split the vanilla bean in half lengthways and add to the cream/milk mixture. Place over medium heat and bring to boiling point, remove from heat and set aside for a few minutes. Whisk the yolks and sugar together until pale and creamy. Add just a little of the hot cream mixture to the yolks/sugar and whisk to combine, now add the rest, whisk well then return to the saucepan. Place over low/medium heat, and stirring constantly, cook for about five minutes, or until the mixture thickens a little and coats the back of your spoon. Transfer to a jug and place in the fridge.
Now pull out your ice cream moulds (I found mine on Amazon), and fill about 1/3 with the custard, add a layer of the apricot puree and repeat until they are full. Push in a wooden stick or whatever your mould needs and pop in the freezer for at least 6 hours or until firm. At this point, dip the base of your mould into a bowl or sink of room temperature water then quickly pull ice creams out of their moulds. Place on a tray lined with baking paper and return to the freezer for another half an hour or so.
Melt the chocolate in a bowl over simmering water. Stir in the coconut oil and dip the ice creams about half-way into the melted chocolate. Return to the tray and pop back in the freezer until needed.