Did you know that Plant City, Florida is the Winter Strawberry Capital of the World?!? Right now is the perfect time to take a trip to Plant City or to your local pick your own strawberry field and fill up a bucket of fresh, delicious strawberries. Grocery stores and farmers' markets are also keeping a plentiful inventory.
Enjoy this easy recipe and the delightful pleasure of making your own homemade ice cream.
3 Cups fresh Florida strawberries, stemmed and sliced
4 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 ½ Cups of sugar divided (1/2 cup & 1 full cup)
1 ½ Cups of whole milk
2 ¾ Cups heavy cream
1 ½ Teaspoons pure vanilla extract
In a small bowl, combine the strawberries with the lemon juice and ½ cup of the sugar.
Stir gently and allow the strawberries to macerate in the juices for 2 hours.
Using a strainer, strain the berries, reserving the juices.
Then, mash or puree half the berries.
In medium mixing bowl, use a hand mixer on low speed to combine the milk and remaining granulated sugar until the sugar is dissolved, about 1-2 minutes. If you don't have a mixer, use a hand whisk for 3-4 minutes.
Stir in the heavy cream, reserved strawberry juice, mashed strawberries and vanilla.
Turn the machine on; pour the mixture into the freezer bowl, and let mix until thickened about 20-25 minutes.
Five minutes before the mixing is completed, add the reserved sliced strawberries and let mix in completely.
If you don't have an ice cream maker, don't despair, you don't need one, just:
Pour in the reserved strawberries, mix and place into a plastic container covered with a tight lid and chill in the freezer over night, stirring occasionally until hardened.
Note: The ice cream will have a soft, creamy texture. If a firmer consistency is desired, transfer the ice cream to an airtight container and place in freezer about 2 hours. Remove from freezer about 15 minutes before serving.