Although a really good vanilla ice cream could be the indispensable foundation of an ice cream emporium, I’d imagine that a shop’s reputation could also be made on the strength of a killer peach ice cream. Maybe it’s because I live in Georgia, “The Peach State”- witness the peach in the center of our license plates – but peach is an iconic ice cream flavor, and when done right is the perfect taste of summer: cool, refreshing, peachy, creamy.
Dorie Greenspan’s Honey Peach Ice Cream was the recipe chosen for this week’s Tuesdays with Dorie baking group by Tommi of Brown Interior . I was a little worried that it might be too early for local peaches, but the first ones hit the stores and showed up in my farm box order the very week that I had planned to make this ice cream.
To be honest, I didn’t set forth to have a taste test, but it’s pretty hard to resist ripe local peaches. I picked up a couple of pounds more, and in addition to eating sliced peaches with
As a final bonus, I made a half batch of David Lebovitz’ peach variation of his nectarine sorbet. Three different frozen peach treats in my freezer! I’ll describe each of the ice creams separately, then pick a winner at the end.
Dorie Greenspan’s Honey Peach Ice Cream
- You can find the recipe on Tommi's blog post.
- Dorie’s recipe calls for 2 pounds of peaches, and she estimates that at 4 peaches. I’m not sure that our peaches ever get as big as half a pound each! I used 11 small, early, local peaches, and measured out 2 lbs of peach cubes (900 grams) after peeling and pitting the peaches. I think that meant that I used a bit more than Dorie’s recipe contemplates – her measurement was 2 lbs of whole fruit.
- It’s no fun to peel 11 small peaches with a knife; instead I blanched the peaches for 1 minute in boiling water then immediately shocked them in a bowl of ice water. This
makes the peach skins easy to rub off, and not as much peach is lost to peeling.
- Looking back over the recipe, I realize now that I didn’t follow Dorie’s directions exactly. Rather than keeping half of the peaches to use as chunks in the ice cream, I cooked and pureed all of them. Cooking the fruit prevents the fruit bits from becoming icy in the freezer.
- Custards are getting a little less scary for me, and luckily this one behaved well.
- The ice cream completely filled the 2 quart bowl of my ice cream maker.
My husband is a really big fan of peach ice cream, and he really did love this. Honey is one of my favorite ingredients – I add it to my plain yogurt for lunch and to my morning tea, but I thought the honey and peach were not totally compatible in this ice cream. It’s possible that I should have used a milder honey (I used tupelo) but I thought it was a little bit too prominent. I’m glad that I pureed all of the peaches, as the texture was nice and smooth.
David Lebovitz’ Peach Ice Cream
- The recipe came from The Perfect Scoop. You can find the recipe on page 89 of the Google preview or on this blog but you should do yourself a favor and buy the book - it's wonderful, and jam-packed with information and recipes.
- I made 1.5 recipe, which was just about 2 pounds of peaches. I tried David’s blanching method of cutting an “x” in the bottom of the peach skin, but I didn’t see any real difference; the skins come off plenty easily for me without the cuts. Since we are in “peach country” our peaches are always very fresh and I let them get very ripe before I use them, so maybe that helps the skins come off.
- I had some freshly squeezed lime juice already in the fridge so I used it rather than lemon juice.
- This recipe does not require a custard!!
- I’m not fond of sour cream, but I used it exactly as specified and crossed my fingers that it wouldn’t dominate the ice cream.
– My 2 qt ice cream maker was filled to the brim with ice cream!
Wow! This is some seriously excellent ice cream. When my husband tasted it, he said, “This is the real deal!” The sour cream and lime served to brighten and support the sweetness of the peaches. It was summer on a spoon!
David's Peach Ice Cream on left, Dorie's Honey Peach Ice Cream on right
The great thing about ice cream is that it’s meant to be kept in the freezer, and remains good for quite a while. So we still had a good bit of Dorie’s when I made David’s, and could do a side by side taste test (actually we’ve done several of these, since we had half a gallon of each ice cream!)
Both recipes make delicious peach ice cream. Dorie's is denser, creamier, with a more complex (almost muddled) honey accented peach flavor. David's was softer, fluffier, fresher, with a straightforward peaches+cream flavor.
Ultimately, the cleaner, peachier taste of David’s ice cream took the prize, and will become my go-to peach ice cream recipe.
Peachy Bonus: Peach Sorbet
Peach sorbet on left, Dorie's Peach Honey Ice Cream on upper right, David's Peach Ice Cream on lower right
This past weekend I had a pound of peaches (4) from the Farm Box that were on the verge of being too ripe, and decided to make a peach sorbet. I used the peach variation of David Lebovitz’ Nectarine Sorbet. The peaches were so ripe that the skins came off easily without any blanching at all! The only ingredients are peaches, water, sugar, and a bit of kirsch or lemon juice (I used kirsch), and the result is an deeply-colored and -flavored peachy treat. I actually prefer a fruit sorbet to ice cream, so this really hit the spot for me. Chilly, intense, essence of peach! My husband thought it was good but likes ice cream better; luckily there’s still plenty of that in the freezer for him!
In anticipation of this week’s peach supply, I’m already freezing my canister for Peach Frozen Yogurt (also from The Perfect Scoop). It’s tough duty living in the peach capital of the
little peeled peach waiting to become peach ice cream!