Remember that blueberry girl from Willy Wonka? The one who chewed like a fiend and blew up to the size of a small boat when she chomped a bit too heartily on the three-course-dinner gum and had to be juiced to get back to normal size? I’m not sure I’d choose magic gum as a worthy reason to blow up into a blueberry (I assume that being juiced is not a pleasant experience). No, if you have to turn into a plump-as-all-get-out kind of blueberry, then ice cream is the way to go.
Although Jared’s still sticking to the lime ice cream as his favorite so far, I did find a surprise fan with the blueberry. My little brother took a look at the ice cream last night, started pulling out the store-bought carton of chocolate and said: “No offense, Katrina. I’ll taste the blueberry, but I just really feel like chocolate.” He tasted the blueberry — then he put the chocolate back in the freezer. Woo hoo! A blueberry ice cream convert! That smart kid (with the equally smart taste buds, if I do say so myself) ate a bowl of the antioxidant-filled dessert and called it a day.
This recipe is really great as is — definitely blueberry-y but not too sweet or overpowering — but I think it would be equally great with another little something thrown in during the last few minutes of the mixing process. Maybe white chocolate shavings? Or dark chocolate? Hmm…
Blueberry Ice Cream
From The Essential New York Times Cookbook (Amanda Hesser, p. 726)
• 1 pint blueberries
• ¾ cup sugar
• ¾ cup water
• ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
• 1 heavy cream
Heat blueberries in a heavy saucepan, stirring occasionally, until they break down and yield their juices, 10 to 15 minutes.
In the meantime, dissolve the sugar in the water over low heat for 10 to 15 minutes, until you have a thin syrup. Let cool.
Puree the blueberries in a food processor, then transfer to a bowl and add the lemon juice. Mix in the cooled syrup and the cream, and mix well. Chill overnight (Note: I actually didn’t do the overnight thing; about three hours in the refrigerator worked fine for me.)
Once chilled, pour the blueberry mixture into an ice cream maker, and freeze according to your machine’s instructions. Pack the ice cream in an airtight container, and freeze until ready to serve.
I’m going to officially deem this ice cream week because it’s only Wednesday, and I’m four recipes down in my quest to break in the ol’ ice cream maker we brought home last weekend. I’m pretty sure the grocery store folks at the place near my parents’ house must think I’m developing an unhealthy obsession. For the past four afternoons, I’ve headed to the store around 4 and left with two items in my bag: a pint of heavy whipping cream and some sort of fruit. On Saturday, it was strawberries and heavy cream. On Sunday, limes and heavy cream. Monday, oranges and heavy cream. And Tuesday, blueberries and heavy cream. Perhaps they think I throw the fruit in a bowl, pour in a healthy dose of cream and eat it all cereal style.
What’s your favorite ice cream mix-in? Any funny grocery store stories that you’d like to share? Let’s hear it!