Hello. How are you? I’m okay. The world is really fucking grim. Let’s make ice cream. I love non-sequiturs!
This ice cream is from Ruby Tandoh’s second book, Flavour, and it’s gorgeous. The base is fresh and milky, with the perfect amount of cinnamon to honey. The first thing you taste is the bright gold of burnt honey which then settles in with warm cinnamon. Each spoonful is comforting and fragrant and you’ll want to eat loads of it.
Burnt honey is a more intense, caramel version of itself, so it’s worth it to choose your favourite; I can’t wait to try it with Mexican orange blossom or lime tree (linden) honey. This was gorgeous to have in the freezer during our heatwave a little while ago; since I like honey much more out of the two of us, I ate most of it myself, and it was great. I leave this here in the hopes that you will find it similarly delightful–and that the weather will perk up enough for us in Britain to work up an appetite for ice cream.
CINNAMON AND BURNT HONEY ICE CREAM
From Flavour by Ruby Tandoh
The one thing I changed was the method. Because I am extremely lazy, I do a one-step custard. You just whisk the dry ingredients til combined, gradually stir in liquid, and go from there.
This is a churned ice cream, but you don’t need a machine for it: the partly invert sugar of the honey plus the alcohol in the vanilla extract help keep things smooth and soft.
I did a hand-churned version as the mixer of my ancient Le Glacier cacked it, using only the frozen ice bucket. It was during our heatwave, so I had to place the bucket in the fridge for 5 – 10 minutes between scraping and churning with a sturdy spatula so the mixture could actually freeze. Look, I just really wanted this ice cream…
(For a no-churn thing, try L&P’s sour cream gelato.)
burnt honey, firstly:
100g (1/3 cup) good runny honey (it tastes great with generic honey; good flowery honey would knock your socks clean off)
300 ml (1 1/4 cups) double cream
ice cream base
* first these:
1 tablespoon cornflour
40g (approx 3 1/2 tbsp) brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 egg yolks
400 ml full-fat milk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract (I used 2 tsp vanilla extract and 1 tsp vanilla bean paste solely because I was running low on the former)
to serve (as you like…)
fresh ripe banana, pear, berries, or whatever fruit you prefer
koh-kae peanuts (original coconut cream flavour) or salted peanuts
maybe some crisp buttery pastry
sea salt flakes
if you want a sauce, how about this salted burnt honey sauce?
First, burn the honey. Pour honey into a small pot, bring to a simmer over a low heat, and reduce gently for 3 – 5 minutes, until a shade darker and more fragrant. The foam will turn white to gold. Immediately pour in the double cream, stirring well to combine. Remove from heat and allow to cool. I always do this in a water bath: sink + few inches of cold tap water + occasional stirring/changing of water (even quicker if there’s lots of ice in there, but maybe save those for your drinks–you’ll still be saving a chunk of time).
For the ice cream base, whisk together cornflour, ground cinnamon, and brown sugar in a medium saucepan, crushing any lumps. Whisk in egg yolks one at a time, then gradually pour in the milk to make a smooth mixture. Set over a medium-low heat, erring on the low side at first. Whisk constantly for 5 minutes, getting all the corners of the pan: if nothing happens, turn the heat up a notch and continue for another few minutes. Mixture’s ready when it thickens into something beautiful, voluptuous, and spoon-coatingly thick. Whisk in vanilla extract.
Pour ice cream base into a large bowl and stir in the honey-cream mixture until thoroughly combined. Cool in the water bath, stirring occasionally (about 25 – 30 minutes with just cold tap water), and chill in the fridge for at least 1 hour until completely cold. Mixture can be held in fridge for 3 – 4 days.
Churn in an ice cream machine according to manufacturer’s instructions, or hand-churn by pouring into a wide tub, freezing for 30 minutes or until the edges are set, beating vigorously with a fork to break up ice crystals. Repeat at 30 – 40 minute intervals until very thick and almost frozen (2 – 3 hours). Allow to freeze completely, but sneaking soft-serve spoonfuls is completely understandable.
To serve, allow to ripen for 10 – 15 minutes at room temperature so scooping it isn’t too stressful (you might be able to scoop it almost immediately if your home is very hot).
I like this with ripe banana, a drizzle of extra honey, and some crunchy salty-sweet business, but you can do whatever you please.