This is not an ice cream WITH lemon curd, like most “Lemon Curd Ice Cream” recipes you will encounter on the web. Those are actually heavy cream mixed with lemon curd.
For the obsessed Lemon Curd lovers, chances are that you are looking for an ice cream which actually IS Lemon Curd. That’s it, a perfectly balanced ice cream, which fluffs up when churned, does not fill with ice crystals in the freezer and is easily scooped. It is a zesty ice cream, bursting with lemon flavour, enriched with egg yolks and mellowed with the addition of butter.
Lemon Curd Ice Cream
You do not have to worry about eating raw eggs in this recipe. With the lemon juice in full boil when poured onto the fridge-cold egg yolks, the whole mix comes to a perfect temperature of 80º C ( 176º F ), which is the exact temperature for pasteurisation. Just do your best and whisk vigorously so that you avoid scrambling the eggs when you add the boiling hot lemon juice.
- Freeze your ice cream machine’s container at least 24 hours before the time you plan to churn the ice cream.
- Make the ice cream base 12 hours before the time you plan to churn the ice cream.
- Let the ice cream sit in the freezer for 3-4 hours after churning, before you serve it
This batch is for an ice cream maker of 1.5 liter/quart capacity.
- lemon zest from 6 lemons ( zested directly into the sugar, see step 1 )
- 165 gr (5.8 ounces) demerara sugar (or regular white sugar, see footnotes)
- 350 ml lemon juice, freshly squeezed, from about 7 medium juicy lemons ( medium lemons weighting around 120 gr / 4.2 ounces each )
- 150 ml water
- 20 gr (0.7 ounces) skimmed milk powder ( optional but highly recommended, see footnotes )
- 125 gr (4.4 ounces) egg yolks, cold from the fridge ( from around 7 large eggs )
- 150 gr (5.2 ounces; about 1.3 stick ) butter, melted
- 1/4 tsp. salt
Step 1 – Prepare the Ice Cream Base
Put the egg yolks in a large bowl, and whisk them lightly to break them down.
In a medium saucepan, put the sugar. Zest the lemons directly into it. Add the lemon juice, water, milk powder and salt. Warm over medium heat stirring often with a whisk, until the sugar dissolves. Increase the heat to high.When it comes to a full boil, count 30 seconds. Remove from the heat, and immediately start pouring it in a steady stream into the egg yolks with one hand, while whisking them vigorously with the other.
Pour everything in a 3 liter / quart blender and switch on to medium speed. Warning
Take great care, as the mixture is scalding, not to let it rise above the your blender’s mark for hot liquids. If necessary, allow the temperature to drop a little.
With the blender running, add the melted butter
and blend for a full minute. If you have a beamer, you can use this instead. Pour it back into the large bowl.
Step 2 – Cool the ice cream base
The mixture will be very hot, so stir occasionally to help it cool down a bit.
Then place in an ice bath and let cool completely. Stirring always helps it cool down faster.
How to prepare an ice bath
You will need a large bowl, larger than the bowl with the prepared ice cream base. Put in some ice cubes and cold water. Carefully nest the bowl with the ice cream base in it. Pour more cold water from the sides, till it reaches the ice cream base in the inner bowl in height. Take extra care not to spill any water into the ice cream base.
Alternatively, first nest the bowl with the ice cream base into the empty larger bowl. Fill the sides with ice cubes and cold water, taking care not to let any water spill into the bowl with the ice cream base. This is my preferred method, as sitting directly on the bottom of the bowl, rather than sitting on ice cubes, is more stable.
When the ice cream base has cooled, put a mesh strainer over a container and pour the ice cream base through the mesh strainer into the container. Cover with a lid and leave in the refrigerator overnight to cool.
Step 3 – Churn the ice cream
Prepare the ice cream machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions. With the machine running, pour the chilled ice cream base through the canister and into the ice cream machine. Leave to churn until nice and fluffy.
Remove the machine from the container and place the container covered with a lid into the freezer. Leave for 3-4 hours for the ice cream to set properly, before serving or removing to another container.
Storing the Ice Cream
This ice cream, like all artisanal ice creams, freezes hard in the long term.
To soften it before serving, remove from the freezer and put it in the refrigerator for one hour.
Powdered milk : helps ice cream expand in volume while churning by creating better structure. There are many kinds of powdered milk out there; regular skimmed milk powder works best, plus it can easily be found in most super markets. However, you may use whey powder, whole milk powder or any other powdered milk as long as it consists solely of milk powder (no sugar, flavour or anything else listed on the ingredients)
Volume measurements cannot be provided for powdered milk, as, depending the type you will use, they vary considerably.
Demerara sugar is a variety of raw cane sugar and gives depth of flavour. You may use any kind of raw cane sugar you like, as long as it its light brown in colour.
Regular white sugar works well too, although it doesn’t help in building flavour.