Wild blackberries grow on the farm, on the hill just above the garden. So do ticks, wasps, poison ivy and oak, as well as many other unpleasant things. While I was picking some last week, a critter scrambled around inside the bushes. That's when I got in the golf cart and picked from there!
That time, I only picked what I needed to try the recipe for cornmeal pudding cake. On its debut, it had raspberries with rhubarb, but both are long gone, due to the heat, while the blackberries are going crazy. I made lemon verbena gel-oh, caramel corn ice cream and caramel Cope's corn to set the ice cream on. The rest is blackberry puree and domesticated blackberries. It's a bit more than I normally have on a plate, but I couldn't edit anything out, having a fondness for all.
Yesterday, faced with 100 people and too much ice cream on the proposed menu, I made a Nectarine-Vanilla Bombe, just ice cream ingredients rearranged to make something that doesn't freeze as hard as plain ice cream. There's a nectarine glace center in a vanilla chibouste dome. Glace is just Italian meringue, fruit puree and gelatin; Chibouste is pastry cream, Italian meringue and gelatin. Underneath is crumbled vanilla wafers, and on the plate is nectarine sauce and flowers, what we call PLF's, pretty little flowers. Folks from the kitchen make daily pilgrimages to the garden for PLF's.
With all the corn appearing in the farmer's market, you should try the caramel corn ice cream.
CARAMEL CORN ICE CREAM
4 oz. white chocolate chips
2 ears fresh corn
8 egg yolks
1/2 cup organic cane sugar
1 quart whole milk, preferably Cruze Farm's
Place the white chocolate on a sheet pan and place in a 350 degree oven. Bake for about 5-8 minutes, or until evenly golden brown. Shuck the corn and cut the kernels off the cob. Pour the milk into a large saucepan and bring to a simmer. Remove from heat and stir in the browned white chocolate, the corn and the cobs. Let steep for about 20-30 minutes. Stir well, then strain out the debris.
In a large stainless bowl, whisk together the yolks and the sugar. Bring the milk back to a simmer and slowly stir into the yolk mixture. Place the bowl over a pan of boiling water, making sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water. Whisk constantly, until the mixture is thickened slightly and reaches about 170-175 degrees F. Place immediately over a bowl of ice water to cool, stirring occasionally. Cool to about 60 degrees F before freezing in an ice cream maker.