Ask anyone who knows me and they will tell you how much I love goat cheese. You can specifically ask my mother in law who witnessed me eating my way through Los Angeles via goat cheese-filled meals. I love the tangy, creaminess of a young chevre, but I also love more aged goat cheeses as well, even though they’re a bit harder to find in regular supermarkets. I specifically love the combination of goat cheese and fruit, which led me to believe it would also be good in desserts. So when my brain put the flavor of goat cheese together with vanilla ice cream, I knew it would be delicious before I even tasted it. This ice cream is awesome. Don’t be put off by the fact that there’s cheese in it (please!), my three year old son ate a whole bowl of it before I had the chance to tell him what kind it was. I love to make this and serve it with a fig tart when my mom’s fig tree is in full bloom, but last night I served it over a warm slice of homemade Plum Peach Pie and the combination was heavenly.
*Chevre Vanilla Ice Cream
-In a medium saucepan, heat 3 cups of half and half, cream, or milk (or a combination of any, depending on how fatty you want your ice cream to be) with 3-4 ounces* of plain young, soft, goat cheese, 3/4 cup of sugar and a pinch of kosher salt. Allow the sugar to melt completely and the milk to almost simmer. Use an immersion blender to puree the cheese until the mixture is smooth. Turn off the heat.
-In a small bowl bloom 1 pkg of plain gelatin (or 1 TB if you have it in bulk) in a little cold water and stir it into the milk mixture along with a splash of vanilla extract.
-Pour into a bowl and chill completely before churning in your ice cream maker. Follow manufacturers instructions.
(*Use one of those small logs you find at the store, some brands are 3 oz, some are 4. I’ve done it both ways and it’s good either way.)
I’ve been using the same shortening Pie Crust recipe for years now because it’s so easy and has never given me problems, but yesterday I wanted to try a crust using all butter to see if I liked it better. And I think I might… it definitely had better flavor and it honestly wasn’t any harder to make than my old shortening recipe. If anything, it was a heck of a lot easier to roll out and deal with. So I thought I’d share the recipe with you. It’s adapted from the July issue of ‘Good Housekeeping’.
*All Butter Pie Crust
-In a food processor, mix 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour (Whole Wheat Pastry flour can also be used) with 1/4 tsp kosher salt.
-Add 12 TB of cold, unsalted butter that you’ve diced. Pulse until crumbly.
-While pulsing, slowly drizzle in 4-6 TB of ice water until the dough begins to form large clumps. Don’t take it to the point where you get one big ball, this means you’ve added too much liquid and you will need to add more flour to get the consistency right. You want to be able to squeeze it and have it come together easily with the warmth of your hands.
-Shape it into 2 disks, one slightly larger than the other and wrap in plastic wrap.
-Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, or up to overnight (can also be frozen, well wrapped, for 3 months or so).
-When you’re ready to roll it out, allow the dough to sit at room temperature for 15-20 minutes, or soften it a bit in the microwave on defrost for 20-30 seconds until you can push into it with your finger, but it’s still cold.
-Roll out the larger of the two disks for your bottom crust. Use the smaller for your top crust.