Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Creamy Goat Cheese Cheesecake Ice Cream with Strawberry-Balsamic-Pink Peppercorn Preserve Swirls + Dark Chocolate Freckles

Creamy Goat Cheese Cheesecake Ice Cream with Strawberry-Balsamic-Pink Peppercorn
Preserve Swirls + Dark Chocolate Freckles
I have probably declared my love for goat cheese too many times on my blog. Some of you probably are indifferent about it and a lot of people absolutely despise it. I, on the other had, use it for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and well... even dessert! And this isn't the first time that we've made it into a sweet treat, some of our favorites include: raspberry-goat cheese cheesecake with chocolate ganache and goat cheese brownies. Well, I adored the combination of goat cheese, dark chocolate, + sweet fruit together, so when I had a bunch of my Strawberry-Balsamic-Pink Peppercorn Preserves lying around, I just couldn't stand to not use it for a dessert. However, this time, I wanted to make an extra creamy goat cheese ice cream that would pair perfectly with the preserves. We raved about these wonderfully delicate preserves because their flavor has been heightened with tangy balsamic vinegar and the floral notes from crushed pink peppercorns. Once you have made the goat cheese custard base and it is close to being completely churned, melt up some fancy dark chocolate and slowly drizzle it into the ice cream maker. This process quickly freezes and hardens the chocolate into itty bitty freckles that are perfectly + evenly distributed throughout the ice cream. And lemme say, it is utterly delightful. I especially love that it is slam-packed with chocolate, yet doesn't overwhelm the other important components. After you've freckled the heck out of the goat cheese ice cream, spoon it into a container and layer it along with the preserves, making sure to girlishly swirl them throughout for an extra-special effect once it is scooped and served. This frozen treat may sound a little strange, but it all somehow works together to form the perfect springtime dessert. And newsflash, you don't have to eat this just in a bowl or on a cone, it is amazing on top of a gooey brownie that is still hot from the oven. Think of an over-the-top brownie a la mode... or sandwich a scoop of the ice cream between two dark chocolate sable cookies. Don't those sound delish? They are definitely on my to-do list for the leftover ice cream that's sitting in my freezer. But, you could be like me and just stand at the kitchen counter, pajamas on, and devour it all at once. I have finally reasoned with myself that as long as I don't put it into a bowl to eat, then the calories don't count. It's a scientific fact and I should officially become a dietician (obvi). Ha, don't pretend like you don't occasionally do it too!! Enjoy :)
Look at the gorgeous red color from the preserve swirls... 
Goat Cheese. Chocolate Freckles. Fancy Preserves.
I am obsessed with these chocolate freckles, y'all :)

For the Creamy Goat Cheese Cheesecake Ice Cream Custard Base:
2 ½C Heavy Cream
½C Whole Milk
1 Stick Unsalted Butter, Melted & Cooled Slightly
6 Egg Yolks
1 ¼C Sugar
½t Salt
10oz Goat Cheese, Finely Crumbled
2oz Cream Cheese, Broken into Small Pieces
2t Vanilla
2T Vanilla Bean Infused Rum (or any kind of infused booze that is clear)

For the Goat Cheese Ice Cream with Preserve Swirls & Dark Chocolate Freckles:
Prepared Creamy Goat Cheese Cheesecake Ice Cream Custard Base, Chilled
Homemade Strawberry-Balsamic-Pink Peppercorn Preserves
8oz Dark Chocolate, Roughly Chopped

1. For the Creamy Goat Cheese Cheesecake Ice Cream Custard Base: In a saucepan, bring the cream and milk to a simmer. In a bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar, and salt until fluffy. Slowly whisk in the melted butter. Once combined, gradually and slowly into the simmering milk. Pour this mixture back into the saucepan and cook over low heat, until thickened (it should coat the back of a spoon). Crumble the goat cheese and break up the pieces of cream cheese into the bottom of a large mixing bowl. Place the strainer on top of the goat cheese bowl. Strain the hot custard into a goat cheese filled bowl. Let this mixture sit for a minute or two, and then whisk until both cheeses have completely melted into the base. To ensure that there are no pieces of cheese, I used an immersion blender to briefly blend the base until it was smooth. Stir in the vanilla bean infused rum and vanilla extract. Place this custard filled bowl into an ice bath. Cool the custard base until completely chilled.
2. Assembling the Ice Cream: Once the mixture is chilled, pour the ice cream mixture into the frozen canister of electric ice cream freezer and run according to directions of ice cream maker. While the ice cream is churning, prepare the chocolate by melting it over a double boiler. Transfer the melted chocolate to a container with a spout, such as a liquid measuring cup or a squeeze bottle. When the ice cream is nearly finished churning, add the chocolate, drizzling it in as thinly as possible because you don’t know want large chunks of chocolate, but freckles (or small pieces scattered throughout). As soon as the mixture is done churning, pour or scoop in one-third of the ice cream into a large container, and then spoon some of the strawberry preserves on top of the ice cream. Using the spoon, smooth it out into any even layer and swirl it some for a pretty marbling effect. Repeat this process until all of the ice cream and preserves have been use. Once it has been assembled, store in the freezer until firm, at least 4 hours.

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