Friday, February 24, 2012

Miso Proud Of My White Miso Pear Ice Cream

For Valentines Day this year Josh and I decided to do an all homemade holiday to save some moolah and also because Valentines unintentionally is always a huge fail for us, so we decided...why spend money on failing. And don't get me wrong, it is no ones fault. I just think St. Valentine hates us.

However, the dessert I made for Josh this Valentines was an exception because it was fantastic. A bright spot in an otherwise gray day. I made his favorite ice cream on the planet: White Miso Pear.

Interesting flavor combo huh? Funny thing is, I didn't come up with the idea to combine the salty full taste of miso with the delicate fruity taste of pear, our favorite ice cream shop Humphry Slocombe did. However, about a year or so ago they stopped making it. Time after time we would show up with clear eyes and full hearts but we did indeed lose! (FNL insider joke), for White Miso Pear never made it back on the menu. It saddened Josh, but he eventually moved on to other varieties, though to this day he mentions how much he misses the flavor almost every time we go. 

So I decided to recreate it for him. The recipe you find below is my own take on the flavor and, if I do say so myself, which I do, it is amazingly close to the original! But hopefully I will see how close if Humphry releases the recipe in their first cookbook coming out in April.

It is a really great ice cream folks, one that is sure to please everyone. Subtle, but utterly irresistible.

So make our Valentines even better retrospectively by enjoying this ice cream yourself!

White Miso Pear Ice Cream
*makes about 2 pints

4 ripe bartlett pears, peeled and cored
1/2 cup water
1 cup whole milk
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
3 tablespoons white miso paste
5 egg yolks
2 cups heavy cream 
1/2 tsp lemon juice

1. Cut the pears into 1/2 inch pieces. Cook them with the water in a medium saucepan, covered, over medium heat stirring occasionally until cooked, about 10-12 minutes (If the pears aren't super ripe, you can add a tbsp of sugar or two to enhance the flavor). Remove the pears from the liquid. Purée in a food processor until smooth. Set aside to cool.

2. Separate the egg yolks and put them in a medium bowl. Whisk lightly and set aside.

3. Pour the cream into a large metal or glass mixing bowl and nest it on top of an ice bath in a larger bowl. Put a strainer over the top of the cream bowl.

4. Combine the milk, brown sugar and miso in a medium saucepan. Place over medium-low heat, whisking to incorporate the miso and stirring after it has been incorporated until the mixture is just scalding to the touch, not boiling!!

5. Remove the milk mixture from the heat. Gradually pour the hot liquid over the egg yolks, whisking constantly to avoid the eggs scrambling. Return the mixture to the saucepan and place over med-low heat. Use a spatula to stir the liquid constantly until it begins to thicken and coat the spatula. Don't overcook.

6. Now, remove the pan from the heat and pour the hot liquid through the strainer into the cream, add the pureed pears and lemon juice a well and stir constantly over the ice bath until the mixture has cooled down. Cover it with plastic wrap, leaving a little gap at the top, and refrigerator the mixture 8 hours or overnight.

7. Take your ice cream base out and put it in your ice cream maker. Follow manufacturer’s instructions for churning.

8. When the ice cream has reached a soft-serve type of thickness, transfer it to a separate container and freeze for about 1-2 hours before serving. 

Oh, it also tastes great served on top of a thin crispy ginger cookie or florentine.

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