Saturday, 15 December 2012


I'm throwing my hat into the frenzied ring of Christmas food preparations by offering a quick and easy method for what is possibly the best coffee ice cream I've had outside of Italy. It comes from the kitchen of the Domestic Goddess par excellence, Nigella, and is great for a dash of Italian style to finish a meal. (It is in her new book Nigelissima). It is delicious on its own, or paired with something naughty and chocolatey, like flourless chocolate brownies. The basic recipe contains only two ingredients - double cream and condensed milk - and can be adapted to incorporate other flavours.  And because of the high fat content (from the cream), it requires no churning, and the end result is luscious and melt-in-the-mouth. It never lasts long in my house.....

Makes 800 ml (serves c6)

300 ml double cream
175 g condensed milk (about 2/3 of a standard can)
2 tbsp instant espresso powder
2 tbsp coffee liqueur (such as Tia Maria - optional)

A plastic box to freeze the mixture in

Whisk all the ingredients together until the mixture forms soft peaks. Put into a plastic box and freeze for at least 6 hours or overnight. Serve straight from the freezer.

 Variation: add crushed chocolate covered coffee beans for an extra "crunch"

Variations on a theme:

Amaretto Ice cream

100g hard amaretti biscuits, crushed into fine 'breadcrumbs'
2 tbsp Amaretto liqeuer OR a couple of drops of almond essence

Fold into the beaten cream/condensed milk mixture and freeze.

I tried a chocolate version, using cocoa, but I found the end result rather cloying (though my son liked it). I think Nigella's best chocolate ice cream recipe (from the Cipriani Hotel in Venice) is hard to beat. Recipe here.

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