Grilled Peaches with Basil Ice Cream and Pine Nut Crocante

Grilled Peaches with Basil Ice Cream and Pine Nut Crocante

I loved everything about this ice cream – the flavor, texture, and the color. I so wanted it to be green (without addition of any food colorings which I avoid whenever possible) that for a moment I thought if I was too hard on the basil. Turned out I had worried for nothing – the basil flavor was delicate enough and not overwhelming. The ice cream was lovely served on top of the grilled peaches brushed with Muscovado sugar and melted butter mixture before grilling and drizzled with good quality balsamic right after. The pine nut brittle was just the right accompaniment. The only thing I regret I didn’t make a double batch of the ice cream, it disappeared so fast…

Basil Ice Cream

I’m submitting this recipe to Ammalu’s Kitchen as an entry for Herb Mania – Basil.

Makes 6 servings; about 1 ½ pints ice cream

For the peaches:

  • 4 tbsp (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 2 tbsp packed Muscovado sugar
  • 3 large peaches, ripe but firm
  • Your very best balsamic vinegar (for drizzling)

For the basil ice cream:

  • ½ cup granulated sugar, divided
  • 20 g cut julienne basil leaves (about ½ cup)
  • 2 cups half-and-half
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • ½ cup whipping cream
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice

For serving:

Make the ice cream:

In a bowl of the food processor, combine ¼ sugar and the basil. Process until very finely chopped.

Prepare an ice bath.

In a large heavy saucepan, combine the basil-sugar mixture and half-and-half. Heat over medium heat, stirring occasionally; bring just below the boiling point. In a bowl, whisk the egg yolks, remaining ¼ cup of the sugar, and the salt to combine well. Very gradually, in a thin stream, whisk in the hot half-and-half. Return the egg yolk mixture into the saucepan. Cook the custard over medium-low heat for about 15 minutes, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the custard coats the back of the spoon. Quickly strain the custard into a large bowl. Add the whipping cream and whisk to incorporate. Place the bowl with the custard in the ice bath and cool. Chill, covered, in a fridge for at least 4 hours, better overnight.

Right before processing the custard in the ice cream maker, whisk in 1 tbsp of the lemon juice. Whisk energetically to aerate the mixture. Freeze in the ice cream maker. Transfer to containers, cover, and freeze to firm up.

Grill the peaches:

Preheat the grill to medium-high.

In a small saucepan, combine the butter and Muscovado sugar. Heat, stirring, over medium heat until the butter melts.

Cut the peaches in half vertically, remove the stones but leave the skin on. Brush the peaches generously with the butter-sugar mixture. Grill the peaches, cut side down first, for about 3-4 minutes, until grill marks form and the sugar caramelizes. Turn the peaches, cut side up, and grill for another 4 minutes or so, until the peaches are soft when pierced with a skewer. The grilling time depends on the firmness/ripeness of the peaches.

Transfer the peaches to a serving platter. Let stand for several minutes. The peaches are too hot right from the grill, they will melt the ice cream too quickly. Drizzle a little bit of the balsamic over the peaches. Top with the basil ice cream. Serve crocante on the side; or chop it finely and sprinkle over the ice cream.

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30 Responses to “Grilled Peaches with Basil Ice Cream and Pine Nut Crocante”

  1. Vera Vera Vera….you have managed to make my stomach growl once again! Your color contrast are gorgeous and the recipe quite interesting. Love it!

  2. So beautiful!

    I think I’ve bookmarked your whole blog :)

  3. Love the idea of making basil ice cream. I’ve only eaten it savoury but you’ve made we want to try it in something sweet now :)

  4. I love the caramelized flavor of grilled peach. I normally serve mine with a fresh yogurt and honey (recipe on mine). But Vera, I have to say your idea about using a fresh basil ice-cream is not only unique but decadent!

  5. Yummy!!!!! I can only imagine how wonderful those grilled peaches taste paired with the basil ice cream. Refreshing and sublime, I’m sure…Beautiful work!! I’m scooting off to see if I have any leftover ice cream somewhere in the recesses of my freezer..

  6. Basil ice cream…fantastic! The combination of flavors is so interesting.

  7. How pretty!! The ice cream looks scrumptious sitting on that peach too! :)
    I just found and purchased “doughnut” peaches.. I haven’t had them yet but I’m really looking forward to it, especially after reading your recipe for the “Ring Of Saturn Peach Doughnut and Ice Cream post. :)

  8. There’s no such product as half and half here… maybe half cream and half milk would do?
    I loved each one of the components of the recipe!

  9. Helen, thank you so much for your kind words!

    Marija, thank you very much! I’m very flattered.

    Linda, thank you! I tried and loved the savory version, too.

    Meeta, thank you very much! I also love the peaches with yogurt, as well as with ricotta.

    Christy, thank you. There’s no such thing as leftover ice cream in our house :(. But I have so many other stuff in my freezer waiting to be recycled! It falls out of the freezer right onto my poor head every time I open the freezer door:(.

    Camille, thank you very much for your comment!

    Laurie, thank you! The “doughnut” peaches are so yummy. I’m very interested in what you are planning to do with them. I’ll visit :).

    Sil BsAs, whipping cream and milk in equal proportion will make a perfect substitute for half-and-half.
    Thank you for your comment!

  10. basil ice cream!! how do you come up with this stuff? grilling peaches is the nicest thing you can do to them, and i’m downright fascinated by your ice cream. you never cease to amaze me, vera! :)

  11. I love the colour of this ice cream as well. I’ve grilled peaches and topped them with a basil syrup so I know that basil ice cream would be perfect with peaches. Lovely entry, Vera.

  12. I love basil with strawberries so I’m sure it would be great with peaches too. The color contrast is so beautiful!

  13. I just love the colours and the idea of basil in ice-cream. Gorgeous.

  14. Wow, what wonderful colors, Vera! This ice cream sounds very interesting, and looks so good! I’ll have to try it sometime.

  15. Your recipes and photos are always great. Love your blog. I was searching through your blog and found the white chocoalte tutorial. Wish to try it but corn syrup is not available here. Is it possible to use a substitute? Thanks for the great recipes :-)

  16. Basil flavor icecream! How creative!
    The forcast says that we are going to have the hottest day today, plus I love basil,I have to try this recipe by myself. Thank you very much.

  17. We all know how good roasted Peaches are, but I would love to try that Ice-cream; looks fantastic!

  18. Genius! Basil ice cream! Yum!

  19. I LOVE this idea for basil ice cream! I heisted it and showed off your gorgeous photo and recipe at my blog. (Hopefully that’s okay, if not, don’t hesitate to let me know.) Cheers!

  20. Grace, thank you! I’m so glad I don’t disappoint you :).

    Dragon, thank you. They are good together indeed.

    Cate, thank you very much. I love the strawberries with basil, too.

    Aparna, thank you. I’m happy with the ice cream color, I wanted it to be green :).

    Miri, thank you. I’ll be very glad if you give it a try one day :).

    Natalie, thank you very much for your kind words. I emailed you regarding the chocolate plastic.

    Noa, thank you for your kind comment. Please, let me know if you make the ice cream. I’d like to know your opinion.

    Graeme, thank you very much!

    Jerry, thanks. You are right, it is Yum :).

    Catherine, thank you. Of course, it’s OK, I don’t mind at all.

  21. How beautiful! Lovely color.

  22. I love love love basil ice-cream! It’s so refreshing! And I love the way you served it! With peaches and those caramelized pinenuts, that’s taking it to the next level!

  23. Eileen, Rita, thank you very much!

  24. I have been wanting to try basil ice cream, so this really caught my eye. What a gorgeous dessert!

  25. What a lovely combination. And the greenness of your basil ice cream looks just perfect to me :)

  26. Deborah, thank you! I’m glad you noticed my recipe.

    Y, thanks a lot. I’m very proud of this greenness :)

  27. basil ice cream sounds really great! i’m intrigued.

  28. Diva, thank you!

  29. what is “half and half”?

  30. Kathy, half & half is 10 % cream. If it’s unavailable you can use milk and whipping cream (1 cup each) instead.

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