You may recall, earlier this year I scored a deal on a small ice cream/frozen yogurt maker at Costco; just $25, and I figured it’d be perfect for making dairy-free iced treats for Rich. Then, I tried my hand on root beer ice cream – which was good, but wicked intense, still and all, a scoop o’ the root beer and a scoop o’ the cow-B-gone vanilla together turned out to be a very good thing.
Then, I came across this recipe, by Leah Eskine in her Home on the Range column for the Tribune (paywalled, so no link).
Simple ingredient list, and no special equipment needed – just a blender, my bargain-basement ice cream maker, and a fine mesh sieve. As a bonus, tho’ we don’t normally keep graham crackers in the house, I was planning on making a batch of chocolate peanut butter cups for our book club gathering, so now was the time to try this ice cream recipe.
•8 oz cream cheese, softened
•1/2 cup + 2 tbsp sugar
•1-1/4 cup milk
•1/4 cup sour cream
•8 graham cracker squares
•1 pinch salt
•1-1/2 tsp fresh lemon juice
•1-1/2 tsp vanilla
Note: I didn’t even TRY to make this dairy-free, so used whole milk and real sour cream along with my favorite brand of Wisconsin cream cheese. If you are lucky enough to have a large local dairy community, you would be well served to compare and contrast their products with the national brands. My next-door butter and cream cheese blocks taste better, in my opinion, than the big guys, and cost as much as 50% LESS (!)
Back to the ice cream…
Add the cream cheese to the blender with the sugar and blend for one minute, until the mixture is nicely smooth
With blender still running, add the milk and blend for another minute.
Scrape down sides, then add the sour cream, graham crackers, salt, lemon juice, and vanilla and blend until thick and smooth – about another minute.
Pour the mixture into a bowl through a fine-mesh sieve and chill for at least one hour. I was busy doing other stuff, so ended up letting mine chill overnight and all was good.
Once the mixture is well and truly chilled, bring out your ice cream maker of choice, and churn for ten to fifteen minutes.
At this point, my ice cream was a rich and velvety-thick soft-serve consistency, but I wanted more firm ice cream, so I packed most of it into a covered container and stashed it in the fridge for a few more hours.
Hmmm, I said most of it, what did I do with the rest? Tasted it, of course! Ermmm, for quality control, honest. And it does taste like cheesecake in ice cream form, but, you know what cheese cake needs?
Or, in this case, brandied cherry sauce, which I whipped up on top of the stove while my ice cream was firming up in the freezer.
Details on that, tomorrow.