Rosemary Olive Oil Ice Cream

I’m obsessed with ice cream; I can’t stop making it. It’s because I’ve had ice-cream-maker envy my whole life, and now I’ve finally got one (thanks, Dad and Teryl).

This rosemary olive oil ice cream is my favorite recent concoction, and my contribution to Meeta’s July Monthly Mingle over at What’s For Lunch, Honey?. It’s inspired by an olive oil gelato on the menu at Babbo in New York City. There is a recipe for this in the Babbo cookbook but, cynic that I am, I can’t imagine that Mr. Batali has handed over his own precise formula. (This is a cynicism born of recently reading Bill Buford’s “Heat”.)

Though this ice cream stands squarely on the sweet side of the sweet/savory divide, its flavors are reminiscent of an herb-spiked focaccia bread. I’d like best to eat it with salty, buttery biscuits, which I haven’t got. A few flakes of sea salt stood in nicely.

Rosemary Olive Oil Ice Cream
3 cups whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup sugar
8 egg yolks
2/3 cup olive oil
2 4-6 inch stalks rosemary, rinsed and patted dry

In a large bowl beat together the sugar and egg yolks until thick and pale. You can do this with a hand beater, a stand mixer or, if you’re feeling really mighty, a whisk. Add the olive oil in a steady stream, beating on low speed.

Meanwhile, combine the milk, cream, and rosemary in a large saucepan over medium heat, and cook until mixture is just under a simmer (bubbles will form around the edge of the pan).

Gradually add two cups of hot milk to the yolk mixture, beating or whisking all the while. Slowly pour this back into the saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until mixture is thickened slightly and is able to coat the back of a spoon, about three minutes.

Pour custard through a fine-mesh sieve into a large bowl, discarding rosemary. Set this into a larger bowl filled with ice and cold water, and let cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes. Cover and refrigerate until chilled, at least two hours or overnight.

Process the custard in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions.

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4 Responses to “Rosemary Olive Oil Ice Cream”  

  1. 1 fitzmap

    Hhhhmmmm, Rosemary Olive Oil Ice Cream. I’m a Rocky Road kinda gal, myself. But I guess I would give it a try.

  2. 2 admin

    It ain’t vanilla, that’s for sure. I think both olive oil and rosemary have such a savory reputation that it’s difficult to imagine them in sweet surroundings. The olive oil here lends a silky texture and a soft, earthy fruitiness. It’s really sexy, I promise.

  3. 3 winniethemaltese

    Hi! I just discovered your site, after seeing the picture of your powdered wig cupcake on Flickr, which I adore. Your website is a great source of ideas for entertaining!

    BTW, What kind of ice cream maker do you recommend for someone on a budget?

  4. 4 admin

    Many thanks! I have this ice cream maker (actually, mine’s white, and also on Amazon):

    I love it: it’s very easy to use and it works beautifully. It can be found online for about $40-60, which is in the mid-price range.

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