Monday, October 11, 2010

Fresh Blackberry Swirl Ice Cream

Ufda. Uff da. It's been so long since I've been in the kitchen. Fortunately, this recipe is a treat worth waiting for.

Berries are definitely my favorites when it comes to summer fruits.  And blackberries -- well, they pretty much take the cake as far as I'm concerned.

Because they don't ship well, you'll seldom find blackberries in the market .  And the sheer rarity of them probably fuels my seemingly insatiable desire for them. However, if (like me) you're lucky enough to find a local source for them, you may be able to get your fill during the latter days of summer.

If you've ever been fortunate enough to pick your own, the flavor of blackberries -- tart, yet sweeter then their distant cousin the raspberry -- is likely to conjure nothing less than images & memories of sweltering summer days, brambly thorn-ridden bushes, and the inevitable purpled fingers. 

This year, I happened to have sourced my berries at Outpost, our local food co-op.  There weren't many, but I bought up everything that I could, knowing that I'd find a use for them before they turned bad.  I didn't quite have enough berries to make Megan's Blackberry Basil Jam (though I'm still haunted by the thought of it). And, as much as eating pints of berries out of hand sounded like a great plan, I really wanted to stretch it out as far as I could -- to prolong the joy, so to speak.

To be honest, there wasn't much conversation at all before we decided on making a batch of ice cream. No surprise there, right?

So, we did what we usually do.  We dragged out all the ice cream cookbooks we could find and started playing around with recipes.  What we came up with was an absolute delight -- rich, creamy vanilla ice cream with plenty of daubs of tart/sweet berries. Exactly the sort of thing you'd want to pile into a cone on a warm late summer's night and enjoy right out on the patio.  Or, in our case, feed to our adorable niece!  (She, btw, declared the icecream "marvelous" and proceeded to tell everyone that we'd made it "just for her.")

The recipe for the ice cream is basic -- just a rich vanilla base with a blackberry swirl. That said, I want to share a couple of pieces of information with you while I'm writing all of this down.

We mashed 1 1/2 cups fresh blackberries with a fork and about 3-4 tablespoons of sugar and a teaspoon of fresh lemon juice. We took David Lebovitz's advice and added a bit of vodka to the berries to keep them from freezing solid, and then we layered the blackberries in with the churned ice cream.  The trick didn't work quite as well as I'd hoped (the berries froze a bit more solid than I would have liked) -- not sure exactly why. But, I plan to play around with the proportions of berries to alcohol next time to see what I can come up with.
Beautiful. Luscious. And perfectly local.  Just about nothing beats a bowl of blackberry ice cream.


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15 comments:

  1. oh, no you didn't.

    this looks amazing. I recently received an ice cream maker for my birthday, I may have to try this... great idea for vodka, maybe they have to "soak" a while?

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  2. As an ex-pat of Norweigian country, it's my duty to let you know that it is "uff da". There is a place called "Uff da Mart". I'm not kidding.

    When we lived up north, we had a huge blackberry patch. My Parents would let (make?) us pick with them, but we had to wear long sleeves and jeans to escape the thorns. I miss them so, and this ice cream looks so great, I may have to barter you some DBChallenge...

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  3. I can always count on you for something uniquely yummy. I was lurking around here last night, but was too tired to type (seriously, all I could do was drool on my keyboard). I'm back today with renewed energy to try this wonderful looking dessert (breakfast? it's only 6 AM here) of yours. Had to slink back over to BURP to take the recipe. Vodka? Hmmm? Is it too early for ice cream vodka? Yeah, I think so. But I'll try this later this afternoon. I have blackberries! Yeah.
    Love you guys!
    Melissa

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  4. Yum! The hubs has a serious soft spot for blackberries and would totally love this. Thanks for the idea...although it's making me wish summer weren't almost over!

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  5. Rebecca - Thanks for the education. For some reasons none of the spellings I could find for Uff da seemed quite right... and now I know why!

    Katie - we eat homemade ice cream all year round. Don't let the fall temps stop you!

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  6. This brings back summer for me when I'm always haunting the trails behind the barn looking for wild blackberries. I can never pick enough of them for a whole recipe.

    I knew someone who had a mug that said Uff Da on it, but I never knew what it meant.

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  7. So this is what I've been missing in my life...a local blackberry source. And this ice cream of course. Homemade ice creams are just so delicious, especially when made with quality ingredients. Yum.

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  8. Until recently, I ignored blackberries in favor of blueberries or raspberries. Then a friend introduced me to blackberry peach scones. Now I can't get enough of the big juicy blackberries and I'd love to give your blackberry swirl ice cream a try.

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  9. How lucky, that you were able to source blackberries in Wisconsin at this time of year. Makes me think I must not be looking here hard enough. It's funny, but as much as I'm digging all this autumn food, I am sort of having nostalgic thoughts about the early-summer fruit crop.

    One of these days, I AM going to get an ice cream maker....

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  10. OMG! This Ice-cream is such a mouth-watering!! Yummy! Just love it. Thanks for the share!

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  11. oh my goodness this looks amazing. Beautiful!

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  12. Ah blackberries... I remember the days of my childhood which were the same every summer as my friends parents had this house with loads of blackberry bushes in the back. Lots of torns and cuts but always the best blackberries! Your icecream just looks delicious!

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  13. This is a really yummy ice cream. I don't usually make ice cream with fruits but I would love this one.

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  14. Mmmm, I blackberry and ice cream? Darn I have to wait awhile before berries are back in season here.
    ~ingrid

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