For the past couple of months I have been enjoying the bounty from the bramble bushes outside my front garden. As well as hurried mouthfuls on the way to work (and again on the way home again), bramble jam and fantastic crumbles I decided to use some of the fruit to make an impressive looking, simple and extremely moreish ice cream.
The wild berries have a lovely sour edge, so I decided to pair them with the classic South American toffee spread dulche de leche (you can also use a tinned condensed milk caramel). To keep the South American theme I reduced some spicy Malbec wine along with the fruit, and then swirled it into a simple frozen caramel and cream mixture. If you're berries are on the sweet side, add the juice of half a lemon to cut through the richness.
The high sugar content means this ice cream will stay quite soft and smooth, even if you refreeze it after churning. A pretty dangerous thing if you happen to be in the vicinity of the freezer with a spoon in your hand... I also added a splash rum to my first attempt at making this; it made the texture even softer, but gave a nice grown up spin to a childhood classic.
Dulce de Leche Ice Cream with a Blackberry Malbec Ripple
1 (397g) tin of condensed milk caramel (or equivalent amount of dulche de leche)
450ml whipping cream
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Splash of rum (optional)
100ml Merlot, or fruity wine (or water)
1 tbsp brown sugar
Lightly whip cream and vanilla extract then gently stir in caramel, milk and rum (if using). Chill mixture.
Bring blackberries, wine and sugar to the boil and simmer until berries have broken up and mixture is thick and syrupy.
Strain to remove seeds and thoroughly chill syrup.
Churn caramel mixture in an ice cream machine.
When it is ready place half the frozen mixture in a container and swirl in half the syrup.
Repeat with the other half of the ice cream/syrup and freeze until firm