With summer in full swing here in Ohio, I find that my KitchenAid ice cream maker is being put to great use! Last weekend I picked up some really delicious, sweet cherries from the market and thought they would be the perfect addition to homemade vanilla ice cream.

When I tweeted about my ice cream aspirations, The Repressed Pastry Chef responded and recommended that I add chocolate. So, that is exactly how this Cherry Garcia inspired treat came about.
Once I had my game plan, I turned to google, which lead me to an actual Ben & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia recipe. I felt no need to look further and got right to work shaving chocolate and pitting those damn cherries!

I keep telling myself I need a cherry pitter, but something else always ends up in the cart instead, i.e., fondant cutters, a brownie bite pan, sprinkles, pastry tips – well, you get the idea! At this point I realized the ice cream contained raw eggs. That kind of skeeved me out a tad, so I continued to look online when I came across a recipe on Kiss My Spatula that used the same ingredients with a custard method. This ice cream is super yummy, creamy and full of flavor!

On a side note, I have received quite a few emails from my readers asking where I get certain props for my photos and asking for food photography assistance. I can tell you that everything comes from a variety of places such as World Market, TJ Maxx, Pier 1, Target, Crate and Barrel and Ikea.

In regards to the photography question, believe me, I would love to help you, but I consider myself a novice and feel as though I have no business giving tips! Much of what I do is trial and error and has been learned through youtube tutorials, reading and friends. At some point this summer, I will do a basic post showing you my props, set up, lighting, camera gear, etc.

While on this topic, I would like to draw your attention to a new site that focuses on food photography. Culinary Snapshot was created by Kristen of Dine and Dish. Each post on Culinary Snapshot provides the readers with information about camera settings, lighting, props, and editing. Whether you are just starting out, or have been snapping food photos for a while, you will definitely pick up some tips from fellow food bloggers!

As always, contact me through email, commenting here or twitter if you need further information!

Cherry Garcia Ice Cream

Ingredients:

1/4 cup plain chocolate shaved (I used semisweet)

1/4 cup Bing cherries, fresh, halved and pitted (I cut these quite small, each cherry into 8 pieces)

2 large eggs

3/4 cup sugar

2 cups heavy cream

1 cup milk (I used 2%)

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (This was my addition)


Directions:

1. Place the shaved chocolate flakes and the cherries in separate bowls. Cover and refrigerate.


2. Heat the milk, salt, and sugar in a saucepan. Whisk the eggs in a bowl and gradually add some of the warmed milk, stirring constantly as you pour. Pour the warmed mixture back into the saucepan.


3. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly and scraping the bottom with a heat-resistant spatula until the custard thickens enough to coat the spatula. Strain the custard into the heavy cream and stir.


4. Chill thoroughly, add vanilla extract and transfer the mixture to an ice cream maker and freeze following the manufacturer’s instructions (about 20-25 minutes).


5. After the ice cream stiffens (about 2 minutes before it is done), add the chocolate and the cherries, then continue freezing until the ice cream is ready. Freeze at least 2 hours before serving.


- adapted from Ben & Jerry


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