Spot the difference – one is a sandy beach on Fuerteventura in the Canary Islands…
The other is the contents of a vanilla pod floating atop of a pan full of double cream and milk…
Vanilla Icecream (from Gordon Ramsay’s Just Desserts – makes just over half a litre of incredibly rich icecream)
250ml whole milk
250ml double cream
50g caster sugar
1-2 vanilla pods
6 large free-range egg yolks
1) Put a bowl in the fridge to chill at least a few hours before making this recipe. Also, if you are using an icecream maker, make sure it has been in the freezer for at least 8 hours, preferably overnight.
2) Put the milk and cream in a heavy-based saucepan with 1 tablespoon of the sugar. Split open the vanilla pod(s) and scrape the seeds into the mixture. Add the empty pod(s) too. Slowly bring to the boil.
3) Meanwhile, beat the egg yolks and sugar together with a balloon whisk until pale and creamy.
4) When the vanilla cream mixture is about to boil, take off the heat and pour about a third into the eggs, whisking well. Then pour the rest in slowly, whisking continuously.
5) Return the mixture to the pan and cook on low, stirring continuously until you are able to coat the back of your wooden spoon with the mixture. Careful not to overcook it.
6) Remove from the heat and strain through a sieve into the chilled bowl. Place in the fridge to chill and stir occasionally to make sure no skin forms on the top.
7) Then pour into a shallow container and freeze. Take it out and beat thorougly at least three times during the freezing process. If you have an icecream maker, just pour the mixture into the clever machine and be smug.
Beach photo by Mora McLagan.