Last week, in the run up to Easter, our Nespresso machine, main oven and microwave all conked out over three consecutive days. The repairs and/or replacement of the coffee machine and oven are still outstanding, but did you know that in this day and age you can actually order a microwave on Easter Saturday afternoon and have it delivered free of charge on Easter Sunday morning? Really? Does no one take time out any more for those ‘we-wanna-be-together’ happy-holiday, family occasions, which for us means coming together to share some exceptional food and drink. Ah well, their loss, our gain. Not that I need a microwave for anything other than warming plates, but still, when you’ve only a half-sized oven left to cook in, you simply can’t have empty plates occupying the space.
As if nothing else could go wrong, it did! I’d already made our Easter lunch starter to feature on last week’s blog but to get even further ahead of our Easter celebrations (after all, I do have my third share of a bottle of LPR Champagne to drink before lunch is served!) I decided to make little lemon cream pots for dessert (think lemon tart filling without the pastry).
Usually, when I’m trying out a recipe for the first time, I deliberately override my natural instincts and do exactly what the recipe tells me to. Oftentimes, it’s a big mistake but, hey, I’m not always in the mood for original thought! On this occasion, at a quarter to midnight on Saturday night, I was spooning twelve ramekins worth of expensive ingredients into the waste bin! Nor did I realise, until I finally got to bed at 2:16 am, that the clocks had gone forward and it was now only 4 hours before I needed to get up again!
It’s at times like these that I am so grateful for Primal Plate. I don’t know if there’s anyone else ‘out there’ cooking Primal Plate recipes, but that becomes secondary when I actually find my own food blog the most essential guide to eating well every day! On Easter Sunday morning, just using the site’s search facility for ‘lemon’ was enough to spark the idea of Lemon Curd Ice Cream. The rest is down to what’s in the fridge. Hence it was a case of making ice cream with Co Yo natural coconut milk yogurt and the remnants in a pot of crème fraîche, or making something else. Turns out, if you simply stir lemon curd, coconut milk yogurt and crème fraîche together in a bowl and freeze, the result is food alchemy - a deliciously bright, light, primrose-yellow, zingy, creamy-smooth ice cream.
Purplish-blue Vodka Blueberry Compote and sunshiny Lemon Curd Ice Cream - sweetened with raw organic honey - is the perfect match in this refreshing, tangy dessert. Lemon and blue always look good together and juicy blueberries and lemons are a heady, flavour pairing that’s cooling, floral, citrusy and fresh - reminiscent of springtime and all things bright and beautiful.
If, at first glance, you think the recipe below looks a little complex, look again. The lemon curd takes less than 15 minutes to make, the 3-ingredient ice cream about 10 minutes and the blueberry compote even less than that! Lemon Curd Ice Cream With Vodka Blueberry Compote is in fact a spectacularly easy, make-ahead, special occasion dessert.
Cool, sophisticated, delectable…there aren’t enough superlatives to do this enticing, Vitamin C packed fruit dessert justice!
Lemon Curd Ice Cream With Vodka Blueberry Compote (Serves 6)
Ingredients - for the lemon curd
3 large organic eggs
120g raw organic ‘runny’ honey
100ml fresh lemon juice (2-3 lemons worth)
60g unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into small pieces
1 heaped tbsp lemon zest, finely grated
2-3 drops organic liquid stevia
Ingredients - for the lemon curd ice cream
420g (approx) lemon curd i.e. the full quantity of lemon curd made with ingredients above
250g plain (unsweetened) Greek-style yogurt - I used Co Yo Natural Coconut Milk Yogurt
125g crème fraîche (I used Longley Farm)
Ingredients - for the vodka blueberry compote
300g fresh blueberries
100g organic ‘sugar-free’ blueberry spread (I used Clearspring)
30 ml freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tsp organic arrowroot
2 tbsp organic vodka (I used Snow Queen vodka)
Instructions - for the lemon curd
In a stainless steel bowl, whisk together the eggs, honey and 80ml lemon juice until well blended. Cut the butter into small pieces.
Place the bowl over a saucepan of gently simmering water. Do not let the bottom of the bowl come into contact with the water.
Cook for approximately 6-8 minutes, whisking constantly with a balloon whisk (to prevent it from curdling) until the mixture becomes thick (like soured cream or hollandaise sauce). Don’t get distracted, the mixture can quickly and suddenly turn from thin to thick!
Remove from heat and immediately pour into a clean bowl.
Add the butter to the mixture and whisk until it has melted, then add the grated lemon zest, the rest of the lemon juice and 2 drops liquid stevia. Give everything a good stir then taste. If you think the lemon curd is still too tart, stir in another single drop of stevia.
Take a sheet of plastic cling-film and immediately lay it directly onto the surface of the lemon curd to stop the air getting to it (to prevent a skin forming). Allow the mixture to cool completely. The lemon curd will continue to thicken as it cools. Keep covered and refrigerate until needed.
Instructions - to make lemon curd ice cream
Tip all the ingredients into a bowl and stir together well. Churn the ice cream in an ice cream maker until soft-set consistency, then quickly transfer to a plastic freeze-proof container and freeze until solid.
If you don’t have an ice cream machine, pour into a plastic freeze-proof container and freeze for about an hour-and-a-half until the sides start to get solid. Then mash with a fork to combine the solid ice cream at the sides of the container with the softer centre. Straightaway, put it back into the freezer and freeze until solid.
Take out of the freezer and put in the refrigerator 20-30 minutes before serving to allow the ice cream to soften slightly.
Instructions - to make the vodka blueberry compote
Combine the blueberries, lemon juice and the fruit spread in a medium saucepan over medium heat and cook for about 5 minutes or until the fruit spread dissolves, the blueberry juices start to run and the mixture becomes syrupy - don’t let the berries cook too long or they will become mushy and lose their beautiful shape. Take the pan off the heat.
In a small bowl or tea cup, combine the arrowroot powder with a little of the vodka until a very thin paste is formed. Add a little of the hot blueberry juice to the slaked arrowroot to even out the temperature between the two mixtures, then quickly pour the arrowroot mix into the berry compote, stirring continuously as you do so.
Put the pan back on the heat and keep stirring until the mixture thickens slightly (just below boiling point). Stir in the rest of the vodka.
Remove from the heat. Tip into a bowl and lay a piece of cling film directly onto the surface of the compote to stop the air getting to it - i.e. to stop a skin from forming.
Best served warm or at room temperature.
Blueberries are known as a super fruit; rich in antioxidants, high in vitamins and minerals. Read more about them here: 20 Science-Backed Health Benefits of Blueberries
Carbohydrate 19g Protein 7g - per serving of lemon curd ice cream
Carbohydrate 13g Protein 0g - per serving of vodka blueberry compote