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Strawberry Basil Goat Cheese Ice Cream

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Strawberry basil goat cheese ice cream may sound like an unusual combination but trust us, this works. The flavors are really quite amazing together. This is a sweet, creamy and incredibly rich ice cream. 

Strawberry basil goat cheese ice cream in clear dessert dishes

It isn’t surprising to find strawberries in a dessert but how often do you find basil and goat cheese in something other than a savory dish? They actually make great additions to sweet recipes. Our recipe for roasted figs in goat cheese custard is one example. It is a creamy rich cheesecake-like custard that makes an elegant dessert.

And basil actually has some sweetness to it already which makes it a great addition to sweet endings like this ice cream. It is a very subtle flavor in the ice cream but it adds a whole new dimension to the flavors.

Ingredients you need for strawberry basil goat cheese ice cream:

  • Strawberries
  • Whole milk
  • Fresh basil leaves
  • Heavy cream
  • Goat cheese
  • Sugar
  • Salt
  • Egg yolks
  • Vanilla extract

overhead shot of strawberry basil goat cheese ice cream

How to make strawberry basil goat cheese ice cream:

Step 1: Roast the strawberries:

Start out by preparing the strawberries. Since the juices in the strawberries tend to create large ice crystals when they freeze, I roasted the strawberries to concentrate the liquid. The bonus when you roast the strawberries is that the flavors become more intensified.

After the strawberries are reduced, give them a blitz in a food processor or blender then set them aside while you prepare the ice cream custard.

Step 2: Infuse the milk.

While the strawberries are roasting, you can start on this step. Heat the milk in a saucepan until it just starts to simmer but don’t let it boil. As soon as small bubbles begin to show on the surface of the milk, remove it from the heat and toss in the basil leaves.

Stick the lid on and let it sit for 1 to 2 hours. The longer it sits, the more basil flavor you will have in your ice cream.

You can do these first two steps a day in advance then just store the pureed strawberries and basil-infused milk in the fridge until you are ready to make ice cream. If you choose to infuse the milk a day in advance then strain the basil leaves out of the milk. If you store the milk overnight with the basil in it then the ice cream will have a bit too much basil flavor. The goal is to just have a hint of basil that will compliment the strawberries and goat cheese.

Step 3: Heat the milk, cream and goat cheese.

Now place the saucepan back over medium heat and add the cream, goat cheese, sugar, and salt. Heat the mixture until the goat cheese melts.

Step 4: Temper the egg yolks.

In a separate bowl, whisk the egg yolks and sugar together until they are smooth.  Slowly add about a cup of the warm milk liquid into the egg yolks while you whisk constantly. This will temper the egg yolks so they won’t turn into a large clump of scrambled eggs when you put them in the warm milk mixture.

Step 5: Cook the ice cream custard.

After you temper the egg yolks, add them into the saucepan and cook over medium heat until the custard reaches 180°F.

You don’t have to be super precise here. The custard really only has to reach 160°F but I am cooking it a bit longer because the higher temperature will create richer, creamier ice cream. The thing you need to be careful about is heating it over 180°F because the custard could break. So if you don’t have a thermometer then just heat it until it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.

Step 6: Strain the mixture and add the strawberry puree:

Now pour the mixture over a strainer to separate out the chunks of basil leaves and any cooked bits of egg yolk. Stir in the strawberry puree and some vanilla extract then cover the bowl and place it in the fridge for a couple of hours until it cools completely.

Step 7: Freeze the ice cream.

Pour the mixture into an ice cream maker and follow the manufacturers instructions to churn the ice cream. You can use an old fashioned ice cream churner or one of those handy modern-day ice cream makers. If you want to turn your kitchen into a food science lab, you can freeze it with liquid nitrogen. Check out our post if you want to know how to make liquid nitrogen ice cream.

close up shot of strawberry basil goat cheese ice cream with strawberries and basil in the background

Suggested servings:

What do you serve with strawberry basil goat cheese ice cream, you may ask? Well, this old fashioned cream cheese pound cake is a great pairing with the ice cream. The citrus notes in this classic lemon bundt cake also go quite well with the strawberry and basil flavors. It also goes quite well with chocolate. Try serving it with this molten chocolate lava cake for an incredibly decadent ending to a meal.

SOME OTHER RECIPES WE ARE SURE YOU WILL LOVE:

If you’re on a roll for making ice cream then try this rich, decadent chocolate stout ice cream. The dark stout beer is fabulous with chocolate. 

Have you tried lavender ice cream? It is easy to over-power a recipe with lavender but a small hint of the flavor really adds a nice layer of flavor to a dessert. 

Frozen mangoes blend up into a smooth and creamy faux ice cream. All you need is one ingredient and a food processor and you will have a healthy mango ice cream

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Strawberry Basil Goat Cheese Ice Cream

Strawberry Basil Goat Cheese Ice Cream

Yield: 8 servings
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 45 minutes

Strawberry, basil and goat cheese create a lovely flavor melody. The strawberries get roasted for more depth of flavor and the basil has a delicate undertone that compliments the strawberries and goat cheese very well.

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds strawberries
  • 1-1/4 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup chopped basil leaves
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 8 ounces goat cheese
  • 1 cup sugar (divided, see recipe)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 5 large egg yolks
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350°F. Slice the strawberries in half and spread them out on a rimmed baking sheet. Sprinkle a tablespoon of sugar over them. Place the strawberries in the oven for 45 to 60 minutes.
  2. Scrape the roasted strawberries into a food processor or blender and puree until smooth. Set aside while you prepare the rest of the ingredients. 
  3. Pour the milk into a medium saucepan and heat it over medium heat until it just starts to get small bubbles but does not boil. After the milk gets hot, remove it from the heat and stir in the basil leaves then place a lid on it and let it sit for 1 to 2 hours. (the longer you let it sit, the more basil flavor.)
  4. Place the saucepan back on the stove and add the cream, goat cheese, 3/4 cup of sugar, and the salt to the basil/milk mixture. Cook over medium heat, stirring until the mixture is warm and the goat cheese melts.
  5. In a separate bowl beat the yolks with the remaining 1/4 cup sugar.
  6. Whisk a cup of the warm milk mixture into the yolk mixture. Continue whisking until well combined then pour it into the saucepan with the rest of the warm milk mixture. 
  7. Stir the mixture constantly while you heat it over medium heat. Continue heating and stirring until an instant-read thermometer reads 180°-185°F. (make sure the mixture does not boil).
  8. Pour the custard into the strainer that is set over a bowl to remove any bits of cooked egg yolk and the basil leaves.  
  9. Stir in the vanilla and the strawberry puree then cover the mixture and place it in the fridge to chill. 

Ice cream machine:

  1. Pour the custard into an ice cream maker and follow the manufactures instructions for churning ice cream. 
  2. Transfer the ice cream to an airtight container and freeze for 3 to 4 hours

Notes

  • Roasting the strawberries will intensify the strawberry flavor and make the ice cream creamier because it will cook out some of the water which makes ice crystals. 
  • Use a rimmed baking sheet when you roast the strawberries so the juices don’t run all over the oven. 
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 387Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 190mgSodium: 268mgCarbohydrates: 37gFiber: 2gSugar: 34gProtein: 12g

Nutrition information is a guideline only, is calculated automatically by third party software, and absolute accuracy is not guaranteed.

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