fresh garden peas = ice cream
17 July 2013
A bit of picking in the garden yielded a bowl full of green peas and a handful of fresh mint. The day was a scorcher-- reaching the mid 90s in the Pacific Northwest. I love green peas. I love fresh mint. I love a great vanilla bean ice cream. Why not combine them all together for one fresh (and surprisingly delicious) flavor? So, with flip flops on and a sense of anticipation, I plugged in the ice cream maker.
On the stove top, in a heavy bottom pan, I mixed together 2 cups of non-fat milk, 1 cup of heavy cream, 1/2 cup of sugar, 1 vanilla bean-- split and scraped. I heated this mixture until steaming hot, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Then, I removed it from the heat and added a pinch of salt, the shelled garden peas (discarding the pods) and the freshly washed mint. Then, I gave it a stir and set it aside to steep. About an hour later, I returned and strained the mixture. Next, I added the liquid to the ice cream maker and turned on the machine.
Within 30 minutes, the kids and I were licking cones that everyone loved. The mint imparted a subtle flavor and the peas provided a fresh, even sweetness. (And, if you don't have fresh garden peas on hand, just throw in a handful of frozen peas right out of the freezer!).