Thursday, July 2, 2009

Blueberry banana ice cream

This is just something I threw together without any real plan to use the pint of blueberries getting a little past their prime. I didn't realize until afterward that I was essentially just making a frozen smoothie. Nothing wrong with that, I suppose.

2 cups blueberries
1 large banana, frozen and defrosted
1 cup cream
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup light honey
1/4 cup agave nectar [a half cup of one or the other would be fine, I'm sure.]
up to 1/4 cup sugar depending on how sweet your fruit is
dash nutmeg
dash cinnamon
dash vanilla
dash salt

Plus a little more cream to thin it out. No more than 1/4 cup.

and, because they often show up in blueberry banana bread so should taste good here, 1 large handful pecans, toasted and salted.

and, inspired by the chocolate-covered bacon in vanilla gelato Kat made last week, 2 slices good, but not great, bacon fried crisp and crumbled. My goal here was to find a combination of flavors where the bacon was an integrated part of a complex whole, not just framed by the other flavors. That's why I didn't use top quality bacon, large pieces or all that much of it compared to the pecans. I think Kat manages the same trick with the honey ice cream with bacon and dried figs she made this week.

The ice cream's texture could be better. It's a little too firm when fully frozen and melts goopily. You've had a blueberry smoothie so you have a pretty good idea what the ice cream proper, without the mix-ins, is like. The spices aren't readily identifiable, but I think I can taste them doing their job in there supporting the main flavors. But that's in isolation and I deliberately overloaded it with pecans so every bite pairs the sweet, slightly tart fruit and the chew of savory toasty nuts and the (mostly still) crisp bits of smoky bacon. You get a nice cross fade as the ice cream melts away exposing more of the mix-ins to the taste buds. Or you can start chewing right away and blend the flavors. And I think that blend works really well. Go to IHOP and order the blueberry pancakes with bacon and use the pecan syrup and see if you don't agree.

This seems to have gone over a little better than my last bacon ice cream, although that wasn't unpopular. The more subtle use and the better texture I got out of the bacon helped a lot, I think. The next time I do a bacon ice cream, I think I want to move away from breakfast flavor combinations. I wonder if a bacon and blue cheese ice cream could work without going entirely savory. Or bacon and miso. Ah, I see that last has been done. And used in bourbon root beer floats. Can't top that. I'll have to think of something else.

1 comment:

kat said...

What a great idea. I like the idea of the blueberry & banana since that is our morning smoothie, it would be interesting to try it with a bit of pineapple & some macadamia nuts