Monday, March 22, 2010

French Vanilla Ice Cream and Strawberries frozen with Holy Roman Army and the Leaf Library

A few weeks ago I wrote about the Strawberry Festival in Plant City. One thing I failed to mention in that post is that J-Fur and I bought a half flat of strawberries. Most of them were eaten as is or on top of angel food cake (J-Fur's favorite). She was kind enough to let me use a few for the homemade French Vanilla Ice Cream I was attempting to make. I used an attachment for our stand mixer to make this recipe. Tweak it so that it works for your preferred ice cream making technique.

French Vanilla Ice Cream with Strawberries (adapted from Kitchen Aid recipe)
(printable version)

-2 1/2 cups of half and half
-8 egg yolks
-2 cups heavy cream
-4 tsp. of vanilla
-1/4 tsp. of salt
-2 cups of strawberries

1. In a saucepan heat half and half until very hot (do not boil). Set aside.

2. Combine egg yolks and sugar in stand mixer. Use wire whip to mix (at speed 2 for about 30 seconds). Mixture should be well blended and slightly thick. Continue mixing at a speed of 2 while adding half and half.

3. Return half and half mixture to the saucepan and cook over medium heat. Bubbles should form around the edge of the pan. Dump the half and half into a large bowl. Add heavy cream, vanilla and salt. Cover and chill (I did mine overnight but eight hours should be plenty).

4. Attach ice cream maker and freeze bowl to the stand mixer. Turn to speed 1 and pour the mixture into the bowl. Mix for 30 minutes. Add strawberries with ten minutes left. Immediately transfer to an airtight container and freeze for at least four more hours.

*The strawberries didn't blend very well (taste wise) with the ice cream. The recipe suggests adding sugar (2 to 3 teaspoons) along with the strawberries which I didn't do. Next time I think I will try that along with pureeing the strawberries before putting them into the ice cream so that the strawberry taste is dispersed amongst the ice cream.

Waiting for the ice cream to freeze left me lots of time to enjoy some new music. One album I enjoyed was the Holy Roman Army's Desecrations EP. While the EP is technically new, the songs on it are not as they are all covers. Bon Iver, Pavement, Rollerskate Skinny and Peter Broderick all fall victim to the bands "desecrations." My favorite track is their revamping of Wave of Mutilation by the Pixies which becomes more mechanical and dreamy in Holy Roman Army's hands. You can download the entire album at the bands bandcamp page. Here is a video for one of their older songs, "Stagger Gently Home." The pictures in the video were created by some students (7-10 year olds) in Ireland.

Mark Linkous, mastermind behind Sparklehorse, was found dead a few weeks ago (a link to the Rolling Stone article about his death). As a tribute to him the Leaf Library released a beautiful cover of his song "Hundreds of Sparrows." You can check it out below. Thanks to Eardrums Music for pushing it into my aural cavity.

Hundreds Of Sparrows by The Leaf Library