I love ice cream. I mean, I love it. I was snacking on a box of mint chocolate chip the other day and that thought popped in to my head. I LOVE ice cream. I love ice cream so much I would marry it. If I were on death row I’d want 5 boxes of it for my last meal. Really, it’s probably why I don’t really care for other desserts; how could you when it kind of feels like cheating? Seriously, why go on a date with David Duchovny when you’ve got Dave Grohl at home?
Strawberry and mint chocolate chip have a tie for first place, followed by peach, pistachio, peppermint stick, Cherry Garcia, banana, vanilla and lemon. In spite of my unconditional love I do have rules for ice cream. Ice cream cannot be the flavor chocolate; any flavor chocolate. Ice cream cannot contain any candy unless it is the aforementioned peppermint stick or chocolate chips. Ice cream cannot contain cookies, cakes, pies, fudge, carmel, marshmallow, jelly or any synthetic ooze. It cannot have a name that sounds like something unappetizing you might find accidentally stuck to the bottom of your shoe, Moose Tracks, for instance. The only thing that shall adorn my ice cream shall be jimmies (or the truly shameful, please don’t tell anyone, Magic Shell). And while I’m airing my dirty secrets, really there isn’t anything more decadent (and fun!) than pouring the Magic Shell directly into the box of ice cream and eating your way through layer after layer.
I can list the ice cream stores in different states I’ve been to and which flavor I ate. If you come to my house and I actually serve you a dessert that isn’t a glass of wine there’s an 85% chance that dessert will involve ice cream. If I could keep my yap shut on childhood trips Ocean City minimizing the “Are we there yet?”s, I was treated to the ever elusive peppermint stick ice cream at the HoJo. I used to race home from the bus stop to sit on the heater vent in the middle of winter and eat ice cream everyday after middle school. My preferred brand was Bryer’s. My first job was scooping ice cream, of course. I was so devoted I managed to move up from conehead to fountain girl quickly. My sister and I have the same birthday. My step-mom always got us the same exact cake for our birthdays - Baskin Robbins ice cream cake with white cake with chocolate chip ice cream. We had this up until birthdays 30 & 25. I could tell thousands of ice cream stories.
Oddly, I’ve never made my own ice cream. The kids took it upon themselves to rectify that situation and bestowed on me an ice cream maker for my birthday.
Blueberry Lime Zest Ice Cream
1 1/2 cups cream
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 cup sugar
1 pint blueberries
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 large egg yolks
zest of 3 limes
1 cup water
Combine the water and 1/4 cup sugar in a pot bring to a boil, add lime zest and simmer until the liquid has reduced by half. Strain and reserve the zest. Combine the milk, cream and 1/2 cup sugar and heat on the stove to 175 degrees strain through a fine mesh sieve. Combine egg yolks and remaining 1/4 cup sugar, whisk until thickened. Add milk and cream slowly to the eggs, whisking the entire time. Add the vanilla and return the mixture to the stove and heat to 180 degrees. Strain again. Cool to room temperature then fully cool in refrigerator. When cool add the custard and blueberries to a blender and blend until combined. Finely mince the lime zest. Place the custard in the ice cream maker and run as directed, 3 minutes prior to completion, add in 1.5 teaspoons of the lime zest. Pour in a container and freeze overnight.
Notes: The ice cream recipe comes from food52.com. I added the lime zest based on a recipe for blueberries with lime zest confit and creme fraiche from the Les Halles cookbook.