It’s Valentine’s day and I wanted to make my husband something special.
I spotted some rhubarb in the shop which seemed perfect for Valentines as I know he loves it and I’ve never, ever cooked it.
To the basket I also added another of his favourites, custard, and then a few staples for a rhubarb crumble.
When I got home though I realised I didn’t fancy a crumble. They’re ugly and stodgy and whilst they’re definitely perfect for a Winter weekend I fancied something lighter and prettier.
So I decided to turn my ingredients into a cheat’s rhubarb ripple ice cream and almond shortbread cookies, I know right 🙂
Cheat’s 2 Step Ice Cream
I’ve made ice cream from scratch before and I love it. I usually use the old faithful Ben & Jerry’s book and it always tastes great. The other day though I saw Nigel Slater make ice cream with a pot of custard and I fancied giving it a try.
It’s literally as easy as sticking a pot of custard in an ice cream maker. That’s it!
If you don’t have an ice cream maker you can just put it into a tub in the freezer and give it a mix up once or twice an hour until it freezes.
I’ve never really been one for lumps of fruit in ice cream so I decided to get the flavour of the rhubarb into a ripple that I cold swirl through my ice cream.
To do this I just chopped the rhubarb and mixed it with a little sugar and a splash of water, then heated.
Once the fruit had softened completely I sieved it and heated some more until it had tuned into a sticky syrup.
Once cooked it was ready to be rippled through the almost frozen custard, and re-set. Nice 🙂
I’d found a cute little heart shaped cookie cutter and was determined to use it, so why I chose to make shortbread, the crumbliest biscuit ever, I don’t know.
I made the simple mix using flour, butter, ground almonds and sugar and then sort of pressed it into my cookie cutter with my fingers like a child constructing a sand castle, then carefully slid it off.
I discovered afterwards that once a sheet of shortbread is cooked you can easily cut it into shapes when it’s still soft from the oven. But still, live and learn! I had fun with my method 🙂
Let me know if you cook this up for anyone special! x
- Rhubarb Ripple
- 280g rhubarb
- 50g sugar
- 2 tbsp. water
- Chop the rhubarb and add to a pan with the sugar and water
- Heat until the fruit is very soft
- Sieve, pressing the fruit to remove all the moisture
- Put back on the heat and cook until it has a syrupy texture (about 5 more mins)
- Place a bowl in some ice or cold water and tip the syrup in
- Place bowl in fridge to chill
- Put the pot of custard into the ice cream maker and switch on!
- Or, if you don't have an ice cream maker, put the custard into a lidded bowl and put it in the freezer. Give it a stir every hour or so. It will take about 3 hours to freeze.
- Once the ice cream is almost ready carefully ripple the syrup through and add to the freezer for about an hour.
- Mix the butter, flour and sugar until they form a breadcrumb like texture
- Add the ground almonds and mix
- Press the mix into cookie cutters and carefully remove, or into a shallow, lined baking tray (they can be cut when you remove them from the oven).
- Cook for about 20 minutes until golden brown.
*Make sure the syrup is chilled before combining with the ice cream to prevent splitting.