Wednesday, June 9, 2010

From the kitchen...

Photo: The Design Boards

Entertaining is never easy. I wish it were because it's something I love to do, but I usually spend most of my time running around making sure everything is in place and perfect.  I have found lots of little tricks that help make it easier, one of which is finding foods that can be made in advance. A few hours ahead is great but a few days ahead...even better! That is why I love homemade ice cream.  It makes you seem like a genius because few people have ever even tried homemade ice cream (does that little fact surprise you as much as it did me?); the end result is sooo much better than the store bought stuff; and you can truly showcase fresh and seasonal ingredients

This recipe I am about to share with you is full proof. It's eggless which, if you have made ice cream before, you know it's always easier when there aren't eggs involved. It's delicious - I've been told it's so good it's like crack...not sure what that says about my ice cream or perhaps my dinner guests, but you get the's good!*

1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup milk
1 1/4 cups sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 quart strawberries, sliced
juice of 1 lemon
1 cup strawberry kefir (you can also substitute with buttermilk)

Scald the cream and milk with 3/4 cup of sugar and the vanilla, stirring until the sugar is completely dissolved.  Allow the mixture to cool, then chill. 
In a food processor, combine the strawberries, remaining 1/2 cup sugar, and the lemon juice.  Pulse until the mixture is almost liquefied.  Chill the mixture. 
Combine the cream mixture, the strawberries, and the kefir (or buttermilk if substituting), and freeze according to the ice cream maker manufacturer's instructions.

*The one thing you do need to make ice cream is of course an ice cream maker. My mom got us this ice cream maker a few years ago when we were living in our first apartment in New York and yes this appliance is so important to me that I dragged it to every apartment we ever lived in, always finding room for it, even if it was under the bathroom sink.

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