At Home Cherry Garcia Ice Cream- An Impossible Taste Test

cherry garciaSippitySup is not really a premiere dessert destination.

Though I love to make great desserts for dinner parties. Also, whenever we have a birthday within our little group of friends I typically make the cake.

But truth be told I do not really have much of a sweet tooth.

So, since SippitySup is about the foods I love, the feeling I have attached to those foods, the joy I get from passing on what I love about food and what I know about it, SippitySup seems to have a dearth of desserts.

I never really planned this to be a dessert desert, but it seems to have turned out that way.

But back in the day when I had a fully functioning mouth (by that I mean one that is not wired shut) I used to really enjoy Cherry Garcia Cherry Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream from Ben & Jerry. It is one of the few processed foods (especially sweets) I would even consider purchasing.

cheeriesSo I have been thinking about an “at home” cherry Garcia recipe. I have really been considering the proportions of chocolate to cherry to ice cream quite a bit lately. I thought more cherries might improve on B&Js concept some.

So towards that end I started the process last week. Before I broke my jaw. I had every intention of taste testing this dessert. Weighing the decisions I made, improving the recipe so-on-and-so-forth.  Then I broke my jaw.

In my current state, sure I could put all the ingredients in the blender and give it a whirl in order to taste my concoction. But really good ice cream is about texture as much as taste. So I did not really have the heart for a half-assed taste test…

Which is why I certainly did not think I would be posting the recipe after just one swipe at it, with out even experiencing it. (I usually consider a recipe to be a work in progress the first 2 or 3 times I make it).

But between my jaw and the lucky happenstance of ScottySnacks, Savorthethyme and Tangled Noodle hosting an Ice Cream Social (rules here) I decided what the hell. At least somebody will benefit from my efforts here.

Besides I thought to myself you guys could try this first pass at my At Home Cherry Garcia Ice Cream recipe and let me know where it works and where it falls down (they always fall down on the first try). That way all that is left for me to do is take some crappy photographs and write this lame little post. 

chocolateSnap out of it Greg. I broken jaw is not the end of the world!

2 cups whole milk
3/4‑cup sugar
Pinch of salt
1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
6 large egg yolks
1‑cup heavy cream
2 cups cherries, pitted & halved
1‑cup cherry or plain brandy
1‑cup chopped semi-sweet chocolate

Combine the milk, 1/4‑cup sugar, salt, and vanilla bean in a medium saucepan. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring, until sugar is dissolved; remove from heat.

In a medium bowl, whisk together remaining sugar and yolks; set aside. Remove vanilla bean from milk mixture, and discard. Bring the milk mixture just to a simmer. Using a measuring cup or a ladle, slowly pour about 1/2 cup of the hot milk mixture into the egg-yolk mixture, whisking constantly. Keep adding milk mixture, about 1/2 cup at a time until it has all been added.

Pour mixture back into saucepan, and cook over low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, 5 to 8 minutes The custard should retain a line drawn across the back of a the spoon with your finger. Pour through a fine sieve into a medium bowl; discard vanilla bean. Stir in heavy cream; let cool completely. Cover and transfer to refrigerator until chilled at least 1 hour and up to overnight.

cheerry garcia ice creamPlace cherries in a small pan. Add the brandy and set over medium heat. Gently poach the cherries 4–6 minutes until barely softened; set aside. Pour custard into an ice-cream maker and process according to manufacturers’ instructions. During the last minute or two of processing, add the drained cherries along with chocolate. Continue processing until set, but not hard.

Transfer the soft ice cream to a plastic container; freeze at least 3 hours and up to overnight.


Greg Henry