It's the time of year one needs ice cream or sorbet. Plain chocolate, vanilla or strawberry are all well and good but a trend to push your taste bud's limits has appeared. Here is one of my experiments that turns out particularly well.
4 grilled peach halves*, cooled
1 tablespoon lemon or orange juice
2 tablespoons corn starch
1 1/2 cups milk (2%)
1 1/2 cups half and half
1/16 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup honey
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon almond extract or scrapings of 1 vanilla bean
Peel peaches then puree them with the lemon juice until smooth, set aside. In a 2 quart sauce pan, mix corn starch, milk, half and half, salt and honey. (Include the scrapings of the vanilla bean if using.) Bring to a boil stirring constantly with a flat whisk over a medium heat. Remove from heat. Beat egg and yolk together in a small bowl. Ladle at least 1/2 cup of the hot milk mixture into the eggs to temper them, stirring while you add. Return egg mixture to the pan and place on the heat again. Cook an additional 2 minutes, again stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add peach puree and almond extract. Chill and then freeze in an ice cream maker according to manufacturers directions. Cure in the freezer and serve.
* Grilled Peaches
Heat grill to medium (about 375 degrees). Wash and halve peaches. Remove pits and pat dry with paper towels. Brush all over with coconut oil. Place on hot grill cut side down and cook 4 minutes without disturbing them, the lid to the grill closed. With long tongs, turn the peaches over, fill the pit cavity with honey, close the grill lid and cook another 3 or 4 minutes. Remove from grill and serve warm with additional honey, Chocolate Ginger Balsamic Glaze, vanilla custard, etc.
Hints: Ice creams made with honey tend to stay softer than those made with sugar so expect the final product to be a bit soft. The flavor of the honey is readily apparent. You could make this with sugar or raw sugar if you prefer; I would increase the amount to 3/4 cup in that case. The vanilla bean verses the almond extract is personal preference--either one is fabulous. Chilling the custard is vital to getting your ice cream maker to work properly. I let mine chill overnight if possible. I use my small counter top maker for this amount but the recipe could be doubled or tripled for a large outdoor model.
Peaches take me back to childhood. Dad always had 2 or 3 trees in the yard--all ripening at different times. Bottling peaches was a full time job for several days each summer, even for 8 year olds. My maternal grandfather was a nursery man and had the nickname "Peach Tree Smith". He sold peach trees to all the Willard and Brigham City orchard owners. A love of peaches may be included in my genetic inheritance.