If you have ever thought to invest in an ice cream maker, I do recommend it!
Everything tastes better when it's home made, and ice cream and sorbet are no different. I've been playing a bit with my new toy and been sharing the results because frankly, I always make more then I should be eating!
So far I have experimented with gelatos and sorbets.
Because strawberries are delicious this year and I have that whole herb garden at my disposal I made strawberry sorbet my first experiment.
I purchased the type of ice cream maker that has a drum you keep frozen in the freezer. No rock salt or ice required. It doesn't make large quantities, but more then enough for me.
So the sorbet!
4 cups of washed and hulled strawberries, pureed. I just used my magic stick blender
1/2 cup of sugar dissolved in a cup of hot water.
If needed add the liquid to the strawberries to properly puree them
Chill this whole mixture.
When I was ready to make sorbet I added in minced Chocolate Mint leaves (it really is an herb!) and let the whole mixture go.
Things I will change next time. Run the puree through a sieve to remove a bunch of the seeds for a smoother sorbet. Perhaps reduce some of the sugar as strawberries are very naturally sweet this year.
My second attempt was a Cappuccino gelato
I used the best I could find for this one!
Heat 2 cups of half and half
1 cup of 35% cream
Dissolve in 1/2 cup sugar
Add in 2 Tablespoons of good instant espresso powder
1/8 teaspoon of good cinnamon
and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
Let this mixture cool completely and then make ice cream as in your machine directions.
For Mocha I added a few drops of chocolate extract
Changes for future batches: I'm thinking of steeping a vanilla bean in the liquid instead of using the extract.