Blueberry ice cream, au natural. The berries are roasted to remove waters and concentrate the flavor and sugars. A simple base is mixed with the berry puree and once churned, this is the most unmistakably blueberry ice cream you can make at home.
Two things to know about this recipe: 1. the idea was born during my early baby food making days (now 7 years ago!), and 2. the first time I made it my husband told me it was the best ice cream he had in his entire life.
Our pediatrician recommended this book called Little Foodie when babygirl was just starting solids. We tried a few different recipes from it, none really clicked for us except this one dead simple recipe of chucking a couple of handfuls of fresh blueberries into the oven with a bit of cinnamon. The berry lover in me was intrigued, and gave it a go.
Lily loved it and made an adorable purple mess on her face. When I tried it, I was suddenly let in on this secret roasted blueberry world. I thought about all the times in my life I had made various blueberry bakes – muffins, cakes, scones, cookies even. With every one of these, the blueberries were sprinkled in, almost like an afterthought. But what if I could use this method and made them the star? So I got to work.
I came up with a blueberry loaf recipe we loved and I did the same with strawberries a few weeks later. And that color that blueberries gave, sans lemon, was so incredible I wanted it everywhere and on everything..
And so, this ice cream recipe was born – one where blueberries are not relegated to a ripple or made artificially blue but are bursting into center stage, beautifully naturally purple.
The blueberries you use will make a huge difference in taste here. If your berries weren’t that sweet or tasty, the flavor won’t come through. Blueberries have a very delicate flavor when left to stand alone. I’ve had best results when I’ve used berries from local farms. I know for a fact that the reason my husband loved it so much the first time I made it was because the berries were so flavorful. Out of season blueberries won’t lend as good of a flavor.
You may use frozen blueberries as fruits are often frozen at high season. In this case the roasting may take a little longer given the lower temperature of the berries when they go into the oven. Depending on the type of blueberries used, and if you kept the skins in, as well as the addition of lemon the color of your final ice cream will vary from a grayer purple to a fuchsia.
To make this I’d slow roast the berries as directed, puree let cool then stir together with 1 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk and lemon, if using. Then, whip 2 cups of heavy cream to medium peaks and carefully fold it all together. Set it in a container and freeze.
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