Black Velvet, if you please

I’ve made a few frozen concoctions in my ice cream machine, but nothing quite as delicious as this ice cream.

I followed this recipe by Stevie Parle from The Telegraph:

Blackcurrant & Yoghurt Ice Cream

Ingredients: blackcurrants; young blackcurrant leaves (optional); Greek yoghurt; caster sugar; eggs (you’ll just use their yolks, but keep the egg whites for a fab fluffy omelette); full-cream milk; vanilla pod (I think you can get away without it, if you don’t have one)

Follow the Telegraph recipe as it’s complicated enough without me meddling with it! Make it easier with the extra tips I’ve added below:

Making the custard stage of ice cream can be a bit tricky. Be prepared! But don’t be afraid.

Tip 1 – If you’ve not made an egg custard before, there are quite a few delicate operations involved. So you don’t get flustered, have everything weighed and measured out, your washing up and prep areas cleared, and all your equipment laid out ready, before you start. I found it helpful to have a couple of extra bowls too. Read through the recipe, give yourself plenty of time (ban anyone else from entering the kitchen for an hour or two), relax, and you – and everyone else – will enjoy the results!

Tip 2 – if you don’t know what they mean by ‘Vanilla pod, seeds scraped’, as I didn’t, click here where all is explained.

Tip 3 – If you double or triple-up on ingredients to match your blackcurrant stash, make sure everything is doubled or tripled. I was diligently stirring this custard for ages, waiting for that magic moment when it thickens (being extra vigilant not to make scrambled eggs), when I realised I’d forgotten 3 extra egg yolks and another load of sugar for it to thicken. I did wonder, whilst stirring away, if I could cheat next time and use a good quality fresh vanilla custard from the supermarket instead? Worth a try? It did take me the best part of an afternoon to make. But I did enjoy it. It’s good to stretch yourself!

And it was so worth it! The best bit was taking it out of the freezer yesterday evening and putting the scoop through it. Instead of being rock hard (like most of my home-made ice creams) it immediately yielded into one of those velvety smooth, egg-shaped things that you see those amazing amateurs achieve on Master Chef. What’s it called?

A Quenelle!

I felt a ripple of astonishment and wonder that I had achieved such a thing myself. And I wonder if I’ll manage it ever again!

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