Meyer Lemon Ice Cream
Here in Northern California, citrus fruits are ripening. This holds true for the Meyer lemon trees on the property, and suddenly we find ourselves with a small crop to harvest. I use the lemons in main dishes and to make lemon curd, but I’m equally fond of Meyer lemon ice cream. It feels light at the end of a meal, though this certainly won’t be a dessert that is lean on calories. I don’t mind too much because it’s a special treat.
- 3 Large organic Meyer lemons
- 1 Pint heavy whipping cream
- 3/4 Cup whole milk
- 1/2 Vanilla bean halved lengthwise, with the seeds scraped out
- 5 Large egg yolks preferably organic
- 1/2 Cup Bakers fine sugar
- Pinch sea salt
- Equipment: Ice Cream Maker
- Begin by freezing a container to put finished ice cream in, my ice cream maker specifies that the container takes at least twelve hours to freeze.
- Peel two of the lemons. Zest the third and set the zest aside.
- Combine the whipping cream and the milk in a saucepan and bring to a simmer. Add the lemon peel, vanilla bean, vanilla seeds, and a pinch of salt to the cream base. Turn off the heat and cover 30 minutes, allowing the lemon and vanilla to infuse for 30 minutes.
- Reheat the cream base, taking care not to boil it. Meanwhile whisk together the egg yolks and sugar in a large mixing bowl, until the mixture is pale yellow.
- Temper the eggs by slowly pouring the cream base through a fine sieve, in stages, this will prevent the eggs from forming curds.
- Pour the mixture back into a clean saucepan and cook the mixture over medium heat for about 10 minutes or until the mixture thickens enough to coat a spoon. Stir in the zest. Cover and cool the mixture.
- Churn ice cream custard in your ice cream machine according to manufacturer's instructions. I prefer to serve freshly-made ice cream immediately. Embellish with a sprig of fresh mint, or a handful of blueberries, or layer in a spoonful of lemon curd into each serving for contrast. Don't be afraid to experiment!