Recipe // Roasted Oregon Strawberry Ice Cream

Happy Monday friends! How was your weekend?

It’s “officially” summer according to the calendar (even everyone keeps telling me that summer doesn’t really start in Oregon until after 4th of July…) and so I thought it would be the perfect time to share my first homemade ice cream recipe of the season! I love ice cream and plan on making a few different kinds this summer, but since strawberries are at the peak of their season in June here in Oregon, making strawberry ice cream seemed like a logical first flavor to try out!

I picked up a half a flat of gorgeous Hood strawberries at the Portland Farmer’s Market last weekend and after a little research (and a tip from my friend Meredith), I realized that roasting the strawberries first was the best way to incorporate them into ice cream. I came across this recipe (the name of the blog alone sold me) and decided to go for it. I completely forgot that making ice cream is somewhat of a labor intensive process; it’s not particularly difficult or technical, it’s just sort of time consuming…but so, so worth it. This ice cream is absolutely divine!

Roasted Strawberry Ice Cream
Recipe Source: Use Real Butter (Original recipe via Zoë Bakes)
vanilla ice cream base
1 cup whole milk
2 cups heavy cream
3/4 cup sugar
pinch salt
1 vanilla bean, split
6 large egg yolks
1 tsp vanilla extract

roasted strawberry mash
1 lb. strawberries, washed and hulled
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 tbsps sugar
2 tbsps corn syrup
(I wasn’t wild about using corn syrup, but many of the recipes I found called for it and I had it on hand so I did use it – I just forgot to put it in this picture!)

Start the vanilla ice cream: In a medium saucepan, warm the milk, 1 cup of cream, 3/4 cup sugar, and salt over medium heat. Stir to dissolve the sugar. When the milk starts to steam, turn off the heat. Using the tip of a paring knife, scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean pod. Place the seeds and the whole pod into the heated milk. Cover with a tight-fitting lid and let steep for 30 minutes.

Roast the strawberries: Oven 300°F. If the strawberries are large, cut them in half. Place the strawberries in a medium bowl and toss with the balsamic vinegar and 2 tablespoons of sugar. Line a rimmed baking sheet with a silpat mat. Pour the strawberries into the center of the baking sheet. Roast for 30-45 minutes until the juices start running from the strawberries and the berries look slightly mushy. Remove from oven and scrape everything (juices and caramelized sugar) into the same medium bowl. Mash the berries with a fork or a potato masher. Stir in the corn syrup. Set aside.
(I did this step the day before I made the ice cream base, as my strawberries were super ripe and I didn’t want them to mold! The strawberry mash will definitely keep for a few days in the fridge!)

Make the ice cream: Warm the milk mixture up over medium heat until steaming. Place the yolks in a medium bowl and break them up with a whisk. Whisk in a half cup of the warm milk mixture until blended. Whisk in another half cup of the warm milk. Scrape the egg mixture back into the pan with the rest of the milk mixture, whisking to incorporate. Set the pan over medium heat and stir constantly, making sure to get the corners of the pan, until the custard thickens and can coat the back of a spoon. Strain the custard through a fine mesh sieve into a large bowl. Add the remaining cup of heavy cream. Stir in the vanilla extract and the roasted strawberry mash. Chill the custard in the refrigerator (covered) or over an ice bath.

I used eggs from the farmer’s market with super bright yolks, hence why my base is so orange!

I chilled my base in the fridge overnight before putting it in the ice cream maker, just FYI 

When the custard is completely chilled, remove the vanilla bean pod and churn the custard in your ice cream machine according to the manufacturer’s directions. Freeze the ice cream. Makes 1 3/4 quarts.

After about 20 minutes…

Finished product after a night in the freezer! Also, I doubled the recipe because I figure if you’re going to do all the work to make homemade ice cream, you might as well make a lot it (ha!) and I ended up with two of these large containers plus one small container…so we’ve been eating a lot of ice cream 🙂

I’m really happy with the way this ice cream turned out; the texture was really creamy and it totally captured the essence a perfect June strawberry. It’s sweet but not cloyingly so and there is some nice complexity to the flavor from the vanilla bean and the balsamic vinegar. Neither of these ingredients overpower the strawberry, but they just make the flavor richer and even though strawberry isn’t typically my favorite flavor, I loved this ice cream! Definitely give it a try this summer 🙂