Summer arrives with apricots
RECIPE AND PHOTO BY SASHA SWERDLOFF
Apricots are one of my favorite early-summer stone fruits. I love pulling them apart at the seams and taking big, juicy bites as the soft, orange skin brushes my lips, the sourness clings to the back of my throat, and the syrupy fruit quenches my thirst. I can eat half a dozen fresh apricots at a time, but also love to halve them and bake them into cakes, roast them to serve with yogurt, and churn them into ice cream. In this version, the apricots are paired with vanilla beans, brown sugar, ginger, and bourbon for a rich tropical flavor to usher in the summer months.
Apricot Ice Cream with Ginger and Bourbon
Makes 1 pint | Total time: 3 hours | Active time: 15 minutes
2 vanilla beans
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 1/2 cups coconut cream
1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon bourbon
4-6 pitted and halved, ripe apricots
Slice the vanilla beans in half lengthwise and remove the seeds with the dull side of a knife. Set aside the pods for later. Combine the vanilla bean seeds and brown sugar in a small bowl. Rub the vanilla bean seeds into the brown sugar with your fingers until evenly distributed and fragrant. Transfer the brown sugar to a medium pot. Add the spent vanilla bean pods, coconut cream, ground ginger, and salt, and heat over medium-low heat until the mixture is smooth and the brown sugar has dissolved. Remove from the heat, stir in the bourbon, and refrigerate for several hours until thoroughly chilled. Once chilled, remove and discard the vanilla bean pods. Place the apricots in a blender or food processor and puree until mostly smooth. Press the apricot puree through a sieve into a clean bowl. Add the coconut cream to the apricot puree and stir until combined.
Churn the ice cream according to your ice-cream maker’s instructions. Once frozen, transfer the ice cream to a container with a tight-fitting lid and freeze until ready to serve. Before serving, thaw the ice cream for 5–10 minutes or until soft enough to scoop.
Sasha Swerdloff is a Seattle-based recipe developer, food stylist, and photographer at Tending the Table (tendingthetable.com), where she strives to educate readers about our food system and inspire them to eat better for themselves and for the planet.