dark chocolate rosemary ice cream
I wasn’t planning on putting up a post today. The agenda’s a little cramped as it is. But I couldn’t keep this recipe under my hat. It’s just too amazingly – perhaps even surprisingly – delicious to hold back until there’s more free time for blogging.
Dark Chocolate. Rosemary. Ice Cream.
I’ll let you digest that combination for a minute.
Think about it.
I know. I know. You’re scrunching up your forehead, trying to decide if that’s the best or the worst idea for an ice cream flavor you’ve ever heard. I wasn’t so sure myself at the outset. I had been planning on just plain old run-of-the-mill rosemary ice cream but got to thinking about a conversation I had recently with my dad. He, being an old pro at homemade ice cream, believes that chocolate based ice creams are by far creamier and longer lasting in the freezer. Oddly enough, I’d never made a chocolate ice cream on my own and was curious to test his theory.
I thought I might be crazy though to pair chocolate and rosemary so I google the two and saw a recipe on Godiva for a rosemary and chocolate mousse. I knew the best chocolate makers in the world couldn’t be off their rockers so I went ahead with my plan for Dark Chocolate Rosemary Ice Cream.
Oh sweet powers that may be, this is a sinfully good combination. Each scoop, both right after making it and a week later, was creamy and silky and sweet and savory (yes, savory) and almost alarmingly like store-bought consistency. The rosemary is not discernable in the “oh, there’s rosemary in my ice cream!” kind of way. There’s just this addictive aftertaste that keeps teasing your tongue, making you want to eat more to figure out what it is.
I know most of us are slipping into the coolness of autumn, but don’t let the last warm afternoons slip by without having a bowl of this superb summer sweet. I really wish I had started making it sooner myself. But then again, I’ve never let the chill of the outdoors stop me from eating ice cream, even in January.
My one hesitation in writing this post? I can’t decide if my earlier declaration that White Peach and Honey Ice Cream was the best ever ice cream is now defunct or not. When ripe luscious peaches are in season, I think I’d still pick that one. But rosemary is always in season so this recipe is likely to get a lot more use. Obviously, for the sake of science, I should make several more taste tests though, right? By the way, what’s the weirdest ice cream flavor combo you’ve ever heard of?
Dark Chocolate Rosemary Ice Cream
Loosely adapted from Allrecipes.com
3/4 C. sugar
1 C. milk
1/4 t. salt
1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
4 sprigs of fresh rosemary
¼ C. unsweetened cocoa powder
3 egg yolk, lightly beaten*
2 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped very finely
2 C. heavy cream
*With the leftover egg whites, make quick and simple meringue cookies. Here is the basic recipe I follow.
Combine sugar, milk, salt, scraped vanilla bean and pods and TWO rosemary sprigs in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir until the mixture begins to steam and simmer. Remove the rosemary and vanilla pods. Stir in the cocoa powder, being sure to incorporate any lumps.
Place the egg yolks into a small bowl. Gradually stir in about 1/2 cup of the hot liquid to temper the eggs and return everything to the saucepan. Heat until thickened, but do not boil. Remove from the heat, and stir in the chopped chocolate until chocolate is melted. Pour into a chilled bowl and place the other two rosemary sprigs just on the surface (this will impart some of the rosemary’s oil, but don’t submerge/mix the sprigs in as the chocolate mixture will become very thick and it’s hard to get the sprigs out cleanly. Refrigerate for about two hours until cold.
Whip the heavy cream until it forms soft peaks and gently stir into the chocolate mixture. Pour into an ice cream maker, and freeze according to manufacturer’s directions.
(serves 8 )