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Divas on a Dime: An ice cream perfect for summer

This easy, no-churn lemon ice cream is perfect for summer.

If summer had a flavor it’d be this ice cream.

I know that’s a pretty bold statement, but you must try this first and then tell me if I’m wrong.

I made this late one evening, then we enjoyed it the next afternoon when it was sticky, hot and windy. Like living in a blow dryer. With dust. The clean, refreshing lemon flavor is intense but not overwhelming. It’s creamy without being heavy.

The swirl of strawberry adds beautiful color and luscious natural sweetness. It’s light and fresh and not too sweet, which is a plus when you’re in need of the culinary equivalent of running through the sprinklers.

Please note that lemons vary dramatically in size. I’ve given measurements but there’s wiggle room with this recipe. Just use what quantity of zest and juice your lemons provide. You don’t even have to add the strawberry swirl if you’re not feeling it. The lemon ice cream on its own is spectacular.

You can customize this recipe by replacing the strawberries with your favorite summer fruit. You’ll still want to chop it and let it get all friendly and bubbly with the sugar to keep the fruit from freezing so hard you can’t scoop it.

Peaches, nectarines, cherries, blueberries, even plums would work to replace the strawberries in this recipe. Anything that would go well with tart lemon.

LEMON ICE CREAM

WITH STRAWBERRY SWIRL

What You’ll Need:

2 tablespoons finely grated lemon zest

½ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (from about 3 lemons)

2 ¼ cups sugar – divided

¼ teaspoon salt

4 cups half and half

3 cups strawberries – chopped into ¼-inch pieces

Here’s How:

Zest and juice the lemons and place it into a large bowl. Add 1 ½ cups sugar and salt and stir. Pour the half and half into the lemon mixture and stir until the sugar is completely dissolved about 5 minutes. Pour the mixture into a 9×13-inch glass or metal baking pan and freeze until the mixture is solid around the edges and mushy in the middle, about 2 hours.

Meanwhile, in a saucepan over medium heat, combine strawberries with ¾ cup of sugar. Cook until strawberries have softened, and juices have thickened to a syrup-like consistency, about 15 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl and chill in the refrigerator until needed.

When the lemon ice cream is partially frozen, dollop spoonfuls of the strawberry mixture into the ice cream and using a spatula swirl it around. Don’t stir so much that it completely incorporates, you want it streaky. Beautiful!

Cover with foil, and continue to freeze until completely firm, at least an hour more or even better – overnight. Once it’s firm, scoop into bowls to serve. As an option, garnish with more berries and serve with lemon cookies or vanilla wafers.

If you’re in an “over the top” mood, use this ice cream to make ice cream sandwiches on sugar or lemon cookies. Or make a float with lemon lime soda. So, next time life gives you lemons … you’ll know what to do. Enjoy your ice cream!

Fabulous Food by Patti Diamond from “Divas On A Dime – Where Frugal, Meets Fabulous!” – www.divasonadime.com Join us on Facebook at DivasOnADimeDotCom.

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