In our garden, we have an old Belfast sink. It used to be a herb garden, but in recent years, it's been over-run by mint. We are more than happy to have a crop of mint on hand, and so we've let it grow. This week, when I saw some beautiful Sicilian lemons at the greengrocers, I snapped them up. It was time for one of our Summer traditions. It was time to make Mint Icecream.
Mint, lemons, cream and sugar. As I gathered my ingredients, I was reminded of a book that I used to read as a little girl about a boy called Julian whose father makes a special pudding for his mother: "It will taste like a whole raft of lemons, it will taste like a night on the sea."
Years ago, if you remember, our friend J made us this ice cream to enjoy after a lazy Sunday lunch. The recipe is his Mum's and he was kind enough to share it. It's simple, delicious, and D and I have made it every summer since.
Mint Icecream1 pint water
16oz caster sugar (I use golden caster)
1 handful fresh mint leaves
juice of 4 lemons
1 pint double cream
Place sugar and water in a saucepan and bring to the boil, stirring. Remove from the heat and cool for a few minutes (but not completely).
Wash the mint leaves and place in a blender or food processor.
Add the sugar syrup and blend until fine.
Stir in the lemon juice and strain through a sieve into a container.
Freeze until firm (overnight is best).
Blend the frozen syrup again until white and smooth.
Lightly whip the cream, fold quickly into the syrup and re-freeze.
The perfect treat for a Summer day!