When the mercury soars, sometimes the only thing that will bring a bit of sweet relief besides the pool is a bowl of something cold and icy. Sometime ago I bought an ice cream maker, and I must tell you—it's one of the most-used appliances in my house. Ice cream or sherbets from the store can be expensive and sometimes not even really that good, or full of strange ingredients. Homemade ice cream is really quite easy to make and once you taste what it's like to eat some that you've personally created from fresh, quality ingredients, you'll have a hard time going back. Once I started, I couldn't stop and tried everything from vanilla bean to coffee, chocolate coconut, mango sorbet, and chocolate with Guinness beer.
Don't have an ice cream maker? You can still make this! Just follow these great directions for making ice cream without a machine from David Lebovitz.
Last week I went to the market and found some locally grown strawberries. These strawberries were like nothing I'd seen before—smaller, and so red they were almost purple. If you can find local strawberries, they are so much better than those trucked in from far away places. Strawberries often are listed in the Dirty Dozen™ because they carry a lot of pesticide residue. Also it's great to support local berry farmers, who sometimes have small local operations and find it difficult to compete with larger farms south of the border. Here in the Fraser Valley you can stop at roadside stands for your berries, find some U-pick farms, or trek on out to Krause Berry farms where you can buy your berries already picked or pick your own. Right now raspberries are making an appearance so grab some while you can!
Well. Now on to making the sherbet.
4 cups strawberries (about a pound, maybe a little more. Buy 1 1/2 lbs because you'll eat some if you're like me)
1 cup sugar (you can reduce this a bit if your strawberries are very sweet. I would try 3/4 cup)
1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise (no beans? You can use about 1/2 tsp vanilla extract)
1 1/2 cup full fat buttermilk (don't buy the 1% stuff, use the real deal)
1/3 cup full fat sour cream
pinch of salt
Pre-heat oven to 425 F. While it's heating up, gently wash, dry, and core your berries. The kids can help you with this. Cut them in half or, if they are large, in quarters.
Toss the berries with the sugar and scraped seeds from the vanilla bean in a 9x13 cake pan. If you don't have the vanilla bean, then just leave it out and we'll add vanilla extract later.
Roast your berries and sugar for about 15-20 minutes, stirring them every now and then to keep them from burning. The juices will be all bubbly and delicious looking. Resist the urge to eat it. The berries are pretty hot, so kids should skip this step. Let the berries and juice cool to room temperature.
Measure out the buttermilk, sour cream, salt, vanilla extract (if using instead of the bean), and cooled strawberries into your blender. Don't forget the lid. Whiz that baby up until everything is smooth. Chill your lovely mixture in the fridge for about an hour so it's good and cold.
Process your sherbet mixture in your ice cream maker according to manufacturer instructions. It takes a little longer to come together than ice cream, but soon you will be rewarded. Scrape the mixture into an airtight container and place in the fridge overnight so it's ready to serve. (if you don't have an ice cream maker, follow these instructions instead)
The sherbet should last about a week in the fridge if you keep it in a sealed, airtight container. To help with scooping, let it sit on the counter for about 5 minutes before you want to serve. I have a feeling it won't last long-ours sure didn't.
Makes about 6 servings
Adapted from Bon Appetit