Lavender Honey Ice Cream with Raspberry Swirl

The last ice cream post of 2015! Unless I decide to make a winter ice cream, which may happen… Ice cream is best enjoyed in the summer, fall, winter, spring, morning, afternoon, evening, alone, with friends, and every time in between. There is no bad time for ice cream.

Now that we've figured out exactly when it is okay to eat ice cream (anytime), can we talk about this beautiful honey?! I was given this jar of locally made Mellifera Bees lavender infused honey by my momma (Hi Mom!) and was completely taken by it. Deliciously smooth, luscious, and just the right amount of lavender flavour. 

But I had a bit of a difficult time deciding what to use it in. I wanted both the honey and the lavender flavour to come through, but I didn't want it to be too cloyingly sweet or overpoweringly floral. I did a few little experiments, but found that this ice cream was the perfect solution! The honey and lavender flavours are subtle but definitely present and the tart raspberry swirl offsets the sweetness perfectly. 

I'm a sucker for locally made goods (I think it's a requirement for bloggers to like locally made things, farmers markets, and autumn) but Mellifera Bees goes a step further - not only are the bees hives located in Vancouver and the Lower Mainland, but the infusions, such as cardamom, lemon, and vanilla, are sourced from BC companies, too! And look at that packaging guys! Just beautiful. 

I love the lavender honey, but I'm dying to try the vanilla or lemon infused honey as well! The cardamom infused honey is also calling my name now that the weather is turning a bit cooler. Really, I just want all their honey. All of it. 

If you live in Vancouver, Mellifera honey is sold in stores all over! Bel Café, Beaucoup Bakery (go there for their pastries, too, oh my god), Café Bica, Whole Foods, and lots of other stores. They also are sold in a few stores in Victoria, Salt Spring, Calgary, and Toronto! If you don't live in Canada, you're missing out on a great country, but you can still get your honey shipped to you. 

Lavender Honey Ice Cream with Raspberry Swirl

480 g heavy cream
230 g whole milk
100 g lavender infused honey
160 g egg yolks

260 g raspberry purée
60 g sugar
4 g vanilla paste

In a medium saucepan set over medium heat, combine the milk and cream. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and sugar until slightly paler in colour.

When the milk mixture has come to a boil, slowly pour a small amount into the yolk mixture, whisking continuously. Continue tempering the yolks with the milk mixture, then transfer all of back into the saucepan. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring continuously with a rubber spatula, until the mixture has thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon and a thermometer reads 82 C. 

Remove from heat and strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl set over an ice bath. Cool the mixture down to room temperature. Place a piece of plastic wrap directly on the surface to prevent a skin from forming and refrigerate overnight.

For the raspberry swirl, combine the purée, sugar, and vanilla paste in a saucepan set over medium heat. Heat it just enough to dissolve the sugar, then transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate overnight.

Churn the ice cream according to the manufacturers instructions, then transfer to a pre-chilled container such as a loaf pan. Drizzle the raspberry swirl mixture and use a spoon or small rubber spatula to swirl it into the ice cream.

 Freeze for 1 to 2 hours until the ice cream has hardened completely.