Buttermilk Ice Cream

June 11, 2013 at 5:56 pm | Posted in ice creams & frozen, sweet things | 13 Comments
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buttermilk ice cream

We’re in the summer swing here, and I’m starting to see some good-looking fruit at the farmers’ markets.  The first nice strawberries had me digging through my cookbook collection (I’m not a gardener) the other week for some fresh fruit inspiration.  Who wants to turn on the oven, especially in a house with no A/C?  What wound up catching my eye didn’t actually involve fresh fruit, but was something to go with it…Buttermilk Ice Cream.  It had been a while since I’d made ice cream at home and I happened to have some extra-special “real” buttermilk that I thought I’d paid too much for to hide in a baked good.  The gentle sweet tang of this ice cream is the prefect partner for simply sliced berries or peaches.  Don’t get me wrong, it’ll also be *stellar* with strawberry-rhubarb double crisp or  blueberry-nectarine pie.  Oh, and a strawberry-buttermilk milkshake…try that out, too.

I like to store my homemade ice cream in a restaurant-style 1/6 pan with a snap-on lid.  Freeze the empty stainless steel container while the ice cream is churning, and you’ll be good to go!

buttermilk ice cream

Buttermilk Ice Cream (makes about a quart)
adapted from The Last Course by Claudia Fleming

1 1/2 heavy cream 
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar 
 5 large egg yolks (you could use up to 9 yolks- the more the richer)
1 1/2 cups buttermilk 
2 teaspoons vanilla extract (or half a vanilla bean, scraped)
pinch of salt
about 1/8 teaspoon xanthan gum (optional; helps keep ice cream scoopable)

-In a large, heavy saucepan, combine the heavy cream and 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons of sugar (and the vanilla bean seeds and pod, if using) and bring to a simmer over medium heat.

-In a large bowl, vigorously whisk the egg yolks and remaining 1/4 cup of sugar.  You want it to look lightened.

-Remove the cream mixture from the heat and slowly drizzle about half the warm liquid into the egg yolks, whisking constantly.  Then scrape the warmed egg yolks back into the saucepan.

-Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon (if you are using a thermometer, this should be about 175-180°F).  Vigorously whisk in the xanthan gum, if using.  Strain the mixture and whisk in the buttermilk, vanilla extract (if not using a bean), and salt.

-Cool completely over an ice bath. Then refrigerate several hours or overnight before churning in an ice cream machine according manufacturer’s directions.  Transfer to a container for freezer storage.


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  1. What a great idea for storing ice cream! Do you know where I could find one of those?

    • Yes, I have links in the post to the site I purchased from (click on the colored words). If you live near a restaurant supply shop, you could check there as well.

      • Oops! Sorry, I didn’t even notice the links. Thank you! 🙂

  2. This is a great recipe. Thanks for sharing

  3. i have like… too much buttermilk in the fridge, that needs to be used urgently… and i have a new ice cream machine to try!! so i think i’ll combine the two things, and make this ice cream very soon!

  4. This has inspired me to buy a new ice cream machine. I can’t wait to get making some!

  5. I have never tried buttermilk ice cream, it sounds amazing – I will have to give this a go.

  6. What a great idea! I have an ice cream making addiction, but have never tried it with buttermilk!


  7. Sounds and looks amazing!

  8. This looks so beautiful and refreshing! Just the right thing for the warm summer days to come.

  9. I am a fan of ice cream and as a “professional” ice cream eater, I declare this one ice cream I am definitely trying. Making and eating of course~
    Love your taste in angling the pictures 🙂
    -Raining Chocolate

  10. Reblogged this on Edibles and commented:
    Pictures look perfect!

  11. I must add this one to my list! And thank you for the storage solution! I’ve been looking for something that’s reusable yet snazzier than “tupperware”. 🙂

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