Well, yes, in a word. I have been collecting recipes or ideas and stick them into my Ben and Jerry’s Ice cream book. What ever the recipe says, I basically ignore it. It is just the idea that I am after. Ben and Jerry’s ice cream base is the way forward, it needs no cooking.
This week saw me making Salted Caramel Ice Cream. To be honest with you, Himself will eat almost any type of Ice Cream and if it is from Baskin Robbins, then usually the more lurid the better. Case in point, Blue Raspberry, Pink Raspberry, or Wild and Reckless! Not for me!
Salted caramel ice cream is easy to make, maybe a little more time consuming than my previous Ice Creams, but still very easy.
For the Ice Cream Base you will need:-
- 500 mls thick cream
- 500 mls plain full fat yoghurt
- 1/2 cup caster sugar
- 3 large eggs.
To make the base, whisk the eggs together until thick and fluffy. Add the sugar. Add the cream and the yoghurt and mix well together. As always I do this all in a food processor ( it saves on washing up). Put to freeze, either in an ice cream machine or simply in the freezer.
To make the salted caramel bit :-
- 220 grms dark brown sugar
- 300 mls pouring cream
- 1tsp vanilla
- 30 grms unsalted butter
- 1tsp salt
Put all of the above into a pan and heat gently until the sugar dissolves. Bring to a simmer and let it bubble for 4-5 minutes, it will become thicker.
Leave to cool and then put it in a container and refrigerate until the ice cream is almost set. If you add it before the ice cream is set, it will still taste very good, but will just be amalgamated into the general setting ice cream ( believe me, I did just that ) so waiting until the ice cream is practically set, you will get a ripple effect.
Serve with some chopped nuts or chocolate sprinkles, a swoop of whipped cream, if you feel a need for more cream, or eat straight out of the box !
I’ve also made more gnocchi, this time using sweet potatoes. I think on balance I prefer the ones made with normal potatoes, but really not bad.
My basic recipe remains the same:-
- About a kilo of potatoes
- 125 grms plain flour
- 150 grams grated parmesan
- 3 eggs beaten
- Salt to taste.
Simply, peel and boil the potatoes, until soft, but not falling apart. Leave until cool enough to handle, and put through a potato ricer, or sieve. Mix in the eggs, cheese and salt, mix thoroughly..
Lay a sheet of cling film on the counter top and put a length of gnocchi mixture, ( like a long thin sausage) roll up and tie each end with string. In a large pan boil some water and drop in the ” sausages ” ( make sure they are submerged) and boil for about 10 minutes . Remove and pop them into a bowl with cold water.
When cooled, remove the cling film, cut into slices about 1/2″ or so, dip each in flour and sauté in hot butter until golden brown on each side. Drain on paper . Here I wait until they are cold and lay all of them flat on a tray and flat freeze. When frozen, I bag them ready to use, as an alternative to rice, pasta or even potatoes.I usually make multiples of the recipe.
The other thing that I am very much into making are Bagels! I have to admit I was a bit wary at first, as having tried to make them many years ago to disastrous results, I was reluctant to try again, but now, I think I have it cracked. Commercial bagels are cooked in Lye and water, but umm maybe not to do at home and the alternative seems to be very simply just add some baking soda to the boiling water! Seems to work !