Whenever I get a craving for something that’s not quite in season, I buy it anyway and roast it. I learned this trick when I worked as a cook at Paley’s Place in Portland. We had a summer ravioli with fresh tomato sauce on the menu long before there were local tomatoes to work with, so we slow roasted them in the oven until they became as flavorful as those fresh off the vine. Roasting concentrates and intensifies the flavors, and in the case of fruit especially, helps remove excess water. After some time in the oven, your fruit of choice comes out as strong and sweet as ever.
I’ve been dying for strawberries lately, and since our growing season is about four weeks behind this year and I probably won’t be seeing any local berries soon, I caved and bought a pound from California at the grocery store this week. I know, I know. I’m a shame to my berry farming family, but when you hear the siren song of strawberries, it must be answered. I’ve been trying not to eat sweets lately, unless they’ve been made at home, figuring if I have to go to the effort to make something it won’t happen all that often. But all the rain in the forecast, and I needed some edible sunshine. I started dreaming of fresh strawberry ice cream, and decided to roast my contraband berries and churn them into some rich heavy cream to suit my cravings.
I rarely make ice cream base with eggs, preferring a simpler mixture of just cream, milk and sugar, and this one was no exception. I think it tastes lighter and a little icier, which I like in an ice cream. This recipe is super easy and quick, especially if you have an awesome ice cream maker, so give it a shot this weekend if you too can’t get your mind off berries, like me.
Oh, and in case you were wondering, this recipe is Emmett approved. We don’t typically give him sweets unless they are made at home, with simple and high quality ingredients; I just feel better about it that way. Safe to say he was loving this sweet treat.