Blackberry Dark Chocolate Almond Ice Cream

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Last weekend, during an early April snowfall, I made an impulse purchase while dreaming of warm summer days in my garden. Thanks to overnight shipping and North Carolina, I was able to start making ice cream this weekend with 80 degree temperatures.

I’ve been eying a Cuisenart ice cream machine for years but I have consistently convinced myself that it would become a limited storage space conumdrum after the first couple of quarts. However, making ice cream with my new machine was so easy and the countless flavors churning (like that pun?) in my brain leave much to look forward to.

For my first spin, I used the Pioneer Woman’s recipe for Blackberry Chip Icecream and adapted it with chopped up Creative Snacks (local Greensboro company!) dark chocolate almonds. The bright sweet and fruity flavor of blackberry is such an awesome combination with almost bitter dark chocolate nutty almonds. Plus, the color, right?

I’ve got a list of flavors on my mind for seasonal fruits and funky to classic ice creams to come.

PS: Thank you to the friendly woman at If It’s Paper this weekend for encouraging me to post again after a long hiatus. It’s always sweet to hear that people miss my blogging. After typing this up; I think I miss it a bit too.

PPS: How sweet are my front garden Holland tulips as a backdrop to the icecream?

Blackberry Dark Chocolate Almond Ice Cream, adapted from the Pioneer Woman

  • 2 pints fresh blackberries
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 1/2 cups half-and-half
  • 5 egg yolks
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 4 ounces roughly chopped dark chocolate almonds

Combine the blackberries, 1/4 cup of the sugar and the lemon juice in a saucepan. Cook over low heat until the blackberries are broken down and syrupy, about 20 minutes.

Pour the mixture into a bowl through a fine mesh strainer. Using a whisk or spoon, force out as much of the deep purple liquid as you can, and then set it aside to cool. Discard the blackberry pulp and seeds.

Heat the half-and-half and remaining 1 cup sugar in a saucepan over medium heat.

Using a whisk, beat the egg yolks until pale and thick. Temper the eggs by splashing a small amount of the warm cream into the yolks, whisking constantly. Pour the tempered yolks into the saucepan, stirring gently. Cook over medium-low heat until thick, stirring constantly, about 5 minutes.

Pour the heavy cream into the bowl with the berries, and then pour in the custard and stir to combine. If you have time, refrigerate this mixture until cool.

Freeze the mixture according to your ice cream maker’s instructions.

When it is frozen, chop the chocolate into chunks and stir into the ice cream.

Transfer the ice cream to a freezer-safe container and allow it to harden for several hours or overnight.

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