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strawberry basil ice cream recipeA few weeks ago, I was lucky enough to go to the Sargento Cheese Headquarters in Plymouth, Wisconsin. Cheese is a pretty big part of my life and Sargento is a company that I love. I was thrilled to be asked to spend the year being a flavor correspondent discovering the top 10 food trends that Rick Bayless has identified for this year. I have been a huge Rick Bayless fan for many, many years. In fact, Mexico: One Plate at a Time was one of the first cookbooks that I ever bought myself and have been carting it around since college.

sargentoWe began our day learning about the company, what it believes in, and about the products that they make and distribute. It seems like such a nice place to work, the people were happy and smiling, and everyone loves what they do. I was so impressed, I asked my husband if he would consider moving to Wisconsin when he retires. (I’ll get back to you on that.) After an incredible 5-course lunch, we learned about grading cheese, and experienced the life cycle of cheddar. My favorite was the 4-year cheddar, and I discovered that cheese curds are heaven. When friends discovered that I was in Wisconsin, I was asked to bring this delicacy home in my carry on. I get it now.

We moved into another room, only to be surprised to learn about the flavor trends from the horse’s own mouth. Rick (‘cuz we are totally besties now) spent the afternoon teaching us about the trends that he identified. To be honest, I was a little star-struck, I am a HUGE Top Chef fan, and he not only was my favorite on Top Chef Masters, but he won. He truly could not have been nicer, and I think that the thing that I love the most about him is his appreciation of the home cook. He understands that cooking in the home is truly necessary and that teaching people to cook and enjoy food is just as important. And if you have spent anytime here, you know that it is my goal as well to teach people to be more confident in the kitchen and to love cooking as much as I do.

What are the trends you ask?

  1. Middle Eastern Flavors
  2. Peruvian Foods
  3. Habanero Peppers
  4. Tacos
  5. Fermented Foods
  6. Braising Meats
  7. Greens
  8. Street Food
  9. Herbs in Desserts
  10. Mushrooms

I am going to be spending the year focusing on using herbs in dessert, just like in this recipe, and cooking with habanero peppers. And dabbling with the other trends as well. I decided to start off by making a ricotta cheese based ice cream. Making an ice cream like this is incredibly simple, you are just blending ingredients together and not having to make a custard. You could use this as a base for so many flavors. Strawberries and basil are a beautiful combination. Both are sweet, and the addition of the basil gives this ice cream an almost minty flavor. It is a great way to start playing with the idea of herbs in a dessert, instead of just a savory dish.

strawberry basil ice cream recipe1 pound strawberries, cleaned and hulled
3/4 cup Dixie Crystals sugar
1 Tablespoon vodka
Zest of one lemon
1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1 cup basil leaves
1 cup Sargento Whole Milk Ricotta Cheese
1 cup heavy cream
strawberry basil ice cream recipeAdd the strawberries, sugar, vodka, lemon zest, and lemon juice to a bowl.

strawberry basil ice cream recipeToss and let sit for one hour.

strawberry basil ice cream recipeAdd the strawberry mixture, basil leaves, ricotta cheese, and cream to a blender.

strawberry basil ice cream recipePulse to combine, or if you like smooth ice cream, process until smooth.
strawberry basil ice cream recipeCover and let chill for 4 hours, or overnight.

strawberry basil ice cream recipeFreeze according to the manufacture’s instructions for your ice cream maker. Freeze for 20 minutes, and transfer to a freeze-proof container. Freeze until hard. Scoop and serve.

strawberry basil ice cream recipe

The other great thing about this project is working with a great group of bloggers. We didn’t know each other before our trip, and I left with 4 new friends. You can follow their journey as well. (Kelsey was with us in spirit, she had just had a baby, so she participated via Skype.)

Strawberry Basil Ice Cream

Strawberry Basil Ice Cream

Ingredients

  • 1 pound strawberries, cleaned and hulled
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon vodka
  • Zest of one lemon
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 cup basil leaves
  • 1 cup Sargento Whole Milk Ricotta Cheese
  • 1 cup heavy cream

Instructions

  1. Add the strawberries, sugar, vodka, lemon zest, and lemon juice to a bowl. Toss and let sit for one hour.
  2. Add the strawberry mixture, basil leaves, ricotta cheese, and cream to a blender. Pulse to combine, or if you like smooth ice cream, process until smooth. Let chill for 4 hours, or overnight.
  3. Freeze according to the manufacture’s instructions for your ice cream maker. Freeze for 20 minutes, and transfer to a freeze-proof container. Freeze until hard. Scoop and serve.
http://bakedbree.com/strawberry-basil-ice-cream

**This post is a part of my ongoing collaboration with Sargento Cheese. All opinions are 100% my own.**

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34 Responses to Strawberry Basil Ice Cream

  1. Ann says:

    Oh, Bree…your ice cream looks heavenly! I love the use of ricotta in this dessert and, as a major ice cream fan, really need to try it. Looking forward to a year of fun and delicious recipes!

  2. Tieghan says:

    This is like summer in a bowl! Yum!

  3. Two of my favorite flavors! I seriously need to start making my own ice creams.

  4. This is why I need an ice cream maker. Ice cream season is SO CLOSE I CAN TASTE IT!

  5. WOAH! This looks amazing! Adding this to pinterest ;)

  6. Love this combo, I also add a little balsamic vinegar to mine : ) Sounds nuts but works!

  7. Kay B says:

    Hi Bree,
    I live is Wisconsin, very close to Sargento. I hope you enjoyed your visit to Wisconsin, it is a great place to live. I look forward to your future postings about Sargento.

  8. Oh my gosh, I never knew you could make ice cream like this! I have always felt out because I don’t have an ice cream maker… I can never say no to cheese either, so this sounds like my dream ice cream :)

  9. Aya says:

    Now i know what to do with all the basil i have! Thanks for sharing. Always an inspiration.

  10. It must have been great going to the Sargento headquarters. I love ice cream and I know that basil and strawberries make the perfect pair. I will be making this recipe soon.

  11. […] At that talk each blogger was assigned two specific food trends to explore this year. I was assigned food trucks/street food, as you know, and mushrooms. Two of my favorite things! I felt very lucky. The remaining food trends were also cool and I can’t wait to see what my fellow correspondents write. They include: middle eastern foods, Peruvian foods, habanero peppers, tacos, fermented foods, braising meats, greens, and herbs in desserts. […]

  12. […] (You can read about my partnership with Sargento and my Flavor Correspondent assignment in my first post.) I have to be honest, I was a little afraid of habaneros before this trip. I have had them before […]

  13. Bren says:

    That was such a great, quick trip! Glad to have met there! And, making this ice cream. Yup. Sure am. Basil is mu top 3 fave herbs. Niiiice looking stuff, girl!

  14. […] Rick Bayless was introducing the flavor trends for our Flavor Journey, I was thrilled that street food was on the list. I immediately thought of those breakfast burritos […]

  15. […] I started my Sargento Flavor Journey a few months ago, I had never bought habanero peppers before. I had quinoa a handful of times, and […]

  16. […] that I am over my fear of kale, (thanks to the Sargento Flavor Journey). I try to get it into as many things that I can. It is so good for you, and I am finding it really […]

  17. […] (hold the tomato) and a green juice for later. One of the biggest surprises from working with Sargento on my flavor journey is my new found love for kale and dark greens. 6 months ago I never, ever, ever would have ordered […]

  18. […] the Sargento team. She came all the way from Chicago to help me explore my assigned flavor trends, desserts using herbs and habanero peppers. We had a great dinner at Bandolero in Georgetown and ate habaneros in quite a […]

  19. […] of sweet and savory. One of my favorite ways to achieve this is by combining herbs and desserts. (Thanks Sargento for asking me to dive even further into this trend.) Adding thyme to these roasted pears adds a […]

  20. […] is my last post chronicling my Flavor Journey with Sargento Cheese. I have loved every minute of working with Sargento and learning about new trends and flavors. My […]

  21. […] Basil Ice Cream from Baked Bree: Anyone with an ice cream maker want to come over tonight and make this with me? Pretty pretty […]

  22. […] pepper. Got rid rid of the canned soup. Added way more cheese at the end. Before I began my Sargento Flavor Journey, I really never cooked or ate habaneros. Now I use them any time a recipe calls for jalapeno. Yes, […]

  23. bit.ly says:

    […] moved here […]

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