I first encountered basil ice cream on holiday in Islay in 2006. It’s a great flavour for a sweet ice cream, even though it’s a flavour we most strongly associate with savoury!
Basil Ice Cream
Regular readers will know that I am not one to insist that everything always has to be from scratch. Instead of making custard and steeping basil in it as it cooks, I use a good quality fresh ready made custard, add fresh basil and blend. I add extra sugar as sweetness is muted when frozen.
The flavour of the basil comes through clearly and the touch of extra sweetness from the sugar was welcome too – when making custard for ice cream, I make it a touch sweeter than for serving warm, as flavours are always muted a touch by freezing.
This is a lovely, summery ice cream and a nice alternative to fresh mint.
500 grams good quality fresh custard
20 grams fresh basil leaves
2 teaspoons sugar
Optional: 1-2 tablespoons vodka
Note: This ice cream freezes hard. The vodka helps to make it softer.
Process the basil leaves and sugar together to form a paste. I used my Cuisinart Spice and & Nut Grinder for this.
In a blender, combine the custard and the basil paste and blitz until smooth.
Pour into your ice cream maker, and churn according to the instructions.
Pete did all the work creating the cones, which was fairly straightforward but slower than we’d anticipated. He made the batter according to the recipe in the instructions booklet and got to work. After preheating the waffle cone maker, he poured some of the thick batter onto the lower plate, closed the lid and waited for the waffle to cook. We had the temperature set to its highest, but it was still slow. Each waffle took about 5 minutes to cook through – twice the 2-3 minutes instructed. As soon as they had a little colour, Pete used the plastic mould provided to form the pliable waffles into cones before they cooled and hardened. When we tried to give them a little more colour, they hardened too fast for Pete to wrap them around the cone, which is a shame as I thought the darker ones prettiest. A couple weren’t cooked enough and never hardened, but we found we could put them back into the waffle cone maker and cook them a little more. A hint of brown was the best compromise between appearance and being able to form cones easily.
Assembling and Bringing the Bloggers Scream For Ice Cream Logo to Life
When I made this ice cream, I also wanted to style it in a homage to the logo I’d created to represent the Bloggers Scream For Ice Cream challenge, an event I ran for bloggers to create ice cream recipes to a given theme every month. .
We carved out a round scoop from the solid ice cream, chose the darkest waffle cone as the best match to my cartoon cone and drizzled melted dark chocolate over the top