It's National Ice Cream Day!
Every third Sunday of July we get to celebrate the best holiday ever invented... National Ice Cream Day. In 1984, President Reagan declared the holiday and also named July National Ice Cream Month.
Because I work for an ice cream company, I have been known to substitute whole meals with ice cream when short on time during my lunch break. So I do enjoy me some ice cream. But more than anything I love to experiment and play with flavors of ice cream at home.
On Friday I was gifted some fresh, homegrown figs from a coworker and the wheels started turning... I have to admit that I don't eat a lot of figs, but I do believe that they are one of the most beautiful fruits. And I'll basically eat anything if it's floating around in frozen cream and sugar!
Honey Roasted Fig and Mascarpone Ice CreamMakes about 1 1/2 quarts
Honey Roasted Figs1 lb fresh figs, stemmed and quartered
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp honey
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In a baking dish toss together all of the ingredients. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until figs are nice and soft and caramelized. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Once cooled, transfer the figs and all of the juices to a food processor and puree. Place the processed mixture into a bowl and refrigerate.
Mascarpone Ice Cream Base1 cup heavy cream
1 cup whole milk
3/4 cup sugar
3 egg yolks
pinch of salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup mascarpone cheese
Prepare an ice water bath in a very large bowl. Set aside.
In a large bowl whisk together egg yolks and sugar until fluffy and pale yellow. Set aside.
Combine the milk, cream and salt in a medium saucepan and heat over medium heat until just simmering. While beating the egg yolk mixture, pour a very small amount of the hot cream mixture and continue to beat. Repeat this process with a little bit more of the hot mixture. SLOWLY pour the rest of the hot mixture into the egg mixture while continuing to beat. Pour the entire custard mixture back into the saucepan and heat on medium-low for about 5 minutes or until the mixture has thickened enough to coat the back of the spoon. Pour the mixture into a bowl and place into the ice water bath to accelerate the cooling. Once cooled, remove from the ice bath, whisk in the mascarpone cheese and vanilla until smooth, cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours.
Follow the instructions on your ice cream maker to churn the ice cream. My Cuisinart 1.5 quart ice cream maker suggests churning for 20-30 minutes. I churned the ice cream base for about 20 minutes, then poured in the fig mixture and churned for about 5 more minutes. Remove the ice cream and transfer to an air tight container and freeze for at least 2-3 hours.