Roasted Strawberry-Vanilla Ice Cream
This sweet, tart, and creamy confection is a beautiful homage to strawberries and cream. It's a French-style ice cream, adding egg yolks to cream and milk to form a custard base, giving rise to a thick, silky ice cream. According to chef and ice cream maker Fany Gerson, the key to French-style ice cream is making a base so good you could eat it without freezing it. In this recipe, Gerson wanted to celebrate the flavors she grew up eating. "My mom would take strawberries and put a little Mexican crema and sugar on top, and that became dessert," she recalls. "For this ice cream, roasting the strawberries gives a new dimension to the fruit."
Make the roasted strawberries:
Step: 1 Preheat oven to 300°F. Toss together strawberries, sugar, corn syrup, and salt in a 13- x 9-inch baking dish. Roast in preheated oven, stirring occasionally, until strawberries are soft and darker in color and juice is thickened, 30 to 40 minutes.
Step: 2 Using a potato masher, lightly crush strawberries in baking dish, making sure you have a chunky mixture. Let cool completely, about 1 hour. Transfer to a resealable container, and refrigerate until ready to churn or up to 2 days.
Make the ice cream:
Step: 1 Stir together cream and milk in a medium saucepan. Split vanilla bean pod lengthwise; scrape seeds. Add scraped seeds and vanilla pod halves to mixture in saucepan. Cook over medium-low, undisturbed, until mixture just comes to a simmer. Remove from heat. Cover and let steep 45 minutes to 1 hour.
Step: 2 Return steeped cream mixture to heat over medium-low; cook, undisturbed, until mixture just comes to a simmer. Meanwhile, whisk together egg yolks, sugar, and salt in a medium-size heatproof bowl.
Step: 3 Gradually whisk warm cream mixture into yolk mixture in bowl. Transfer cream-yolk mixture to saucepan. Cook over medium-low, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon, 6 to 10 minutes, making sure it doesn't bubble. Remove from heat. Pour through a fine wire-mesh strainer into a medium-size heatproof bowl; discard solids. Place bowl in a large bowl filled with ice water. Let stand, stirring often, until mixture reaches room temperature, about 8 minutes. Transfer to a sealable container; seal and refrigerate until cold, at least 6 hours or up to 12 hours.
Step: 4 Stir together strawberry mixture and ice cream base in a bowl. Pour mixture into frozen freezer bowl of an ice cream maker; proceed according to manufacturer's instructions. Serve immediately for a soft-serve consistency, or transfer to a shallow container, cover, and freeze until firm, about 2 hours. Store in an airtight container in freezer up to 3 weeks.
Roasted strawberries can be made up to 2 days in advance and stored in an airtight container in refrigerator.
It's important to slowly add the hot cream mixture to the egg mixture, whisking constantly and never bringing to a boil, to ensure the eggs don't scramble.