Blackberry and Lemon Balm Ice Cream


It may come as a surprise, but I have never really been a huge fan of ice cream.

As a child I used to enjoy the occasional treat from the local ice cream van – my favourite being an ‘oyster’ – two shell shaped wafers joined together with a coconut coated marshmallow, filled with soft, whipped vanilla ice cream. As an adult I could really take-or-leave ice cream, apart from two very notable occasions. [Read more…]

Lemon, Poppy Seed and Blackcurrant Ripple Ice Cream


As we are coming to the end of August, the evenings are drawing in and the shadows are a little longer in the morning, can I still get away with an ice cream ‘post’?

Why not? The children are still on their ‘summer holidays’, the forecast for the next week is warm and sunny and the Bank Holiday weekend is approaching. Yes, it is still ice-cream-eating weather!

So my inspiration for this ice cream came purely by chance when I stumbled on a fabulous article in The Guardian, ‘The 10 Best Iced Recipes’. Originally a semifreddo dessert, I have adapted the main constituents of the recipe – the lemon, poppy seeds and blackcurrants – to a soft rippled ice cream. A soft scoop ice cream, in a waffle cone, being the iced dessert of choice in our house.

All the ingredients for this recipe are easy to come by. Admittedly, the blackcurrants are seasonal but they are still bountiful in the supermarkets and the ‘Pick Your Own’ farms. The blackcurrant ripple compliments the sweet, lemon ice cream beautifully. For my ripple I have just squashed the currants during the heating proctess. If you prefer a smoother ripple, you can always puree the ripple in the blender and put it though a sieve, whilst still warm.

This ice cream is very easy to make yet has a sophisticated taste and texure. It would be great addition if you are entertaining this weekend. The taste is just sublime.

Lemon, Poppy Seed and Blackcurrant Ripple Ice Cream


  • 150g fresh blackcurrants
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 397g tin of sweetened condensed milk
  • 150ml whole milk
  • 4 lemons, juiced
  • zest of 2 lemons
  • 1 tbsp. poppy seeds
  • 300ml whipping cream
  • 300ml double cream


  1. To prepare the blackcurrant ripple, rinse the blackcurrants and place in a saucepan with the sugar and the lemon juice. Over a medium heat, allow the sugar to dissolve. Allow to simmer and stir occasionally. The fruit should be softened, a little squashed and the juices becoming a little syrupy. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
  2. For the ice cream, in the bowl of a freestanding mixer, place the condensed milk, the whole milk, the juice of the lemons and the lemon zest and combine with the mixer. Then add the poppy seeds and combine further.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk, ideally with an electric whisk, the whipping and double cream together until very light and fluffy and peaks form. Gently fold the creams into the lemon condensed milk mixture, ensuring that the mixtures are well combined.
  4. Pour the ice cream batter into a large plastic container, seal with a lid and place in the freezer.
  5. Remove from the freezer after about 1.5 hours. With an electric whisk, mix the ice cream mixture again until light and creamy. Next add the blackcurrant ripple. Divide the blackcurrant mixture into say, 6 spoonful's and space equally on the ice cream. With a fork, ripple the blackcurrant mixture through the cream ensuring that it covers most of the container but avoid too much mixing so as to achieve thick ripples.
  6. Re-seal the plastic lid on the container and return to the freezer for approximately 6-8 hours, or overnight.
  7. Before serving, allow the ice cream to ripen in the fridge for approximately 30 minutes so that it is the correct softness for serving.

Source: Inspired by and slightly adapted from ‘The Great British Farmhouse Cookbook’ (Yeo Valley) by Sarah Mayor, as seen in The Guardian’s ‘The 10 Best Iced Recipes’

Cherry Ice Cream

cherryicecream-1Long time no post?

Yes, we have been on holiday.

When we booked our trip to Cornwall earlier in the year, we had no idea that we would be blessed with such a glorious, sun drenched week. Who needs the Med when the weather is like this in Blighty? So refreshing not to need our fleeces, long trousers and waterproof jackets. It truly was idyllic; beautiful countryside and coastline, sandy beaches, fishing villages, ferry trips, rock pools and of course, fabulous food.  Inspiration indeed for future posts.

Back to the Cherry Ice Cream…

At last, after three attempts for a successful ice cream post, I am happy to share this with you.

I did not use my KitchenAid Ice cream ‘bowl’ on this occasion. I need more experimentation with it. I adopted the traditional method. To be honest, it wasn’t too onerous. I just made sure that I mixed the eggs and sugar very thoroughly so the mixture was quite creamy before in went into the freezer. I then only whipped it the once, one hour into the freezing process. The ingredients ensure that it is inherently a ‘creamy’ ice cream.


Don’t be put off by the ingredients either. Yes, cherries are not the cheapest fruit available, 10 egg yolks sounds excessive and the cream… but the quantity made here is nearly double the size of any gourmet ice cream tub purchased at the supermarket. I believe that the cost is, more or less, comparable. Add to that, you know exactly what is in the ice cream and the fact that it is ‘homemade’, it WILL taste totally delicious. End of.


Cherry Ice Cream


  • 500g fresh cherries
  • 175g caster sugar, plus a further 3 tablespoons
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 500ml whole milk
  • 250ml double cream
  • 250ml single cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla paste
  • 10 egg yolks


  1. Place the rinsed cherries in a frying pan and add 3 tablespoons of caster sugar and 3 tablespoons of lemon juice. Over a moderate heat, allow the sugar to dissolve and simmer until the fruit is softened and the juices become 'syrupy'.
  2. Remove the cherries from the heat and allow to cool. Pit the cherries and discard the pips. Place the cherries in a blender. Blend. Allow to cool completely and set aside.
  3. Mix the milk, single and double creams into a saucepan and whisk in the vanilla paste. Heat until nearly boiling.
  4. With a hand held whisk (ideally an electric one), thoroughly whisk the egg yolks together in a bowl. Add the remaining 175g of caster sugar to the yolks and continue to whisk until a very pale yellow colour.
  5. Pour the heated milk and cream into the egg and sugar mixture whilst continually mixing the eggs with the electric whisk.
  6. Transfer the whole mixture back to the saucepan. Over a low heat, allow the custard to thicken, mixing as required. This should take about 10 minutes. Pour into a clean bowl and allow to cool completely.
  7. Fold the cherries into the cooled custard until evenly distributed. Transfer the mixture to a large plastic container with a lid (at least 2 litres).
  8. Place in the freezer for 1 hour. Remove from the freezer and with the electric whisk mix the creamy mixture. Return to the container and freeze further. Repeat after a further hour, if desired or, if you have the time.
  9. Continue to freeze until the ice cream has hardened, up to 6 hours.
  10. Allow the ice cream to ripen in the refrigerator for 20 minutes before serving.

Source: Adapted from Nigella Lawson’s ‘Forever Summer’