0613 Strawberry Invasion

Strawberry's Eye View

I went berry-picking this morning.

Berries Everywhere!

And I may have been overly enthusiastic.

Two Perfect Berries

Because now we have twenty pounds of strawberries, approximately 1/3 of which are pictured below.

Tray 1/2

What the hell am I going to do with twenty pounds of strawberries? Answer: jam. And a lot of it. Also gelato. Also a lot of berry-eating out of hand, as these berries are as sweet as candy.

I would tell you about the gelato, but I don’t want to make you jealous.  You should probably just make some yourself, though I’d recommend reducing the quantities by a third or you’ll run the risk of overflowing your food processor and/or your ice cream maker.  Don’t have either of those?  This recipe uses them, but doesn’t require them, so now you have no excuse.  NO EXCUSE, hear me?

Strawberry Gelato from Italy Travel Guide

0306 Beer Ice Cream, Two Ways

When the annual publication from the Michigan Brewers Guild hit our mailbox, Shane immediately was interested in making the Milkshake Stout gelato recipe in the recipes section…except with the Tres Blueberry Stout from Dark Horse. I was skeptical – and wanted an excuse to try the Oatmeal Stout and Heath Bar Ice Cream recipe that I’ve had bookmarked for the better part of a year.  With an Oscar party coming up, we saw no reason not to just make both.

Now, I’ll warn you.  Read these recipes carefully and then FOLLOW THEM.  Trust me when I tell you that it is very easy to end up with a stovetop covered in sticky syrup, or with scrambled egg ice cream.  The former happened after 1-3 boil overs.  The latter didn’t happen, but only because of CONSTANT VIGILANCE.  After all of that and some emergency ice cream maker repairs, we ended up with two amazing desserts, neither of which tasted particularly like beer, but both of which were incredibly creamy and full of rich caramel flavors.  If you’re willing to watch a saucepan for an hour and change, these are both totally worth your time.

Blueberry Stout Gelato
From The Michigan Brewers Guild

16 oz Dark Horse Tres Blueberry Stout (or other creamy stout)
2 cups sugar
1 quart heavy cream

In a heavy saucepan, combine stout and 1 1/2 cups sugar over medium-low heat, whisking occasionally, until reduced to a syrup consistency, about 1 1/2 hours.  DO NOT BE LULLED INTO A FALSE SENSE OF SECURITY BY THE LONG REDUCTION TIME.  THIS IS STICKY SHIT, AND IT WILL MAKE A HUGE MESS OF YOUR STOVE IF IT BOILS OVER.

When the mixture is fully reduced, stir in heavy cream slowly, then add the remaining sugar.  Bring to a boil, then remove from heat.  Pour into a shallow pan and freeze overnight.

Mocha Porter Ice Cream
adapted from A Good Appetite

16 oz Rogue Mocha Porter
3 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup cream
1 cup half & half
1/2 cup chocolate chips, chopped up

In a heavy saucepan, bring the porter to a boil over medium heat and reduce by half.  In a large bowl, whisk the yolks and sugar together until combined, then set aside.  Reduce the heat to low and add the cream and milk. Bring to a simmer, then remove from heat and SLOWLY stir into the egg mixture. THIS IS IMPORTANT unless you’d like scrambled eggs in your ice cream.

Return to the saucepan and cook until slightly thickened, stirring steadily.  Refrigerate until completely cold, then freeze 25 minutes in your ice cream maker. Add the chopped chocolate chips during the last 5 minutes of mixing.