This always happens to me. The cold weather swings by unannounced and I promptly have the urge to make ice cream. Not in summer when it’s the most logical, no, no, no, let’s wait till the mercury hits below 15 (59 for those in the Fahrenheit world) and then dust off the ice cream maker…
To be fair it seems like my favourite season, Autumn, took a leave of absence this year in Melbourne. It was summer, and then voila! Winter said hello. I feel a little cheated. So why not cheer myself up with ice cream?
I’m also reminiscing a little of my trip to Japan in February and putting two and two together, I thought a little matcha ice cream will bring on a large dose of comfort.
While in Kyoto, we visit Ippodo Tea House, renowned for its many varieties of Japanese tea, from the everyday subtle Sencha to the bold and thick Koicha. The Ippodo website wonderfully explains the different types of tea, its components and preparation methods for those who are keen to find out more.
Matcha is a shade-cultivated tea leaf that is finely ground, has a sweet aroma and gloriously jade-green in colour. It is the tea used in traditional Japanese tea ceremonies. A true properly prepared matcha is quite an acquired taste – rich, full-bodied, slightly bitter and salty. Recommended to partake with a sweet treat.
I bought the noob version of matcha when I was in Kyoto – which is essentially an easy to mix, pre-sweetened matcha. And this was what I used to make the ice cream. I used Billy Law’s matcha ice cream recipe and just omitted the sugar. What resulted was matcha ice cream that was delightfully creamy and full of earthy green tea flavour and perfectly sweetened. (Well for my taste as I’m not a fan of overly sweet stuff)
MATCHA ICE CREAM
Recipe by Billy Law in ‘Have you eaten yet?’
Serves 6 – 8 (I halved the recipe)
375ml (13 fl oz/1.5 cups) thickened (whipping) cream
375ml (13 fl oz/1.5 cups) full cream milk
115g (4 oz/0.5 cup caster sugar (which I omitted due to pre-sweetened matcha)
2 tablespoons matcha powder (I used 6 tablespoons of the matcha mix)
1. Whip the cream in a large bowl until soft peaks form. Set aside.
2. Put milk, sugar and matcha powder into a food processor and process until well combined and the sugar has dissolved. Strain the mixture througha fine sieve into the whipped cream. Fold the cream gently into the mixture, then cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or overnight. (Thanks to my noob matcha mix, I only had to mix it in the milk and stir to dissolve, no straining required)
3. Churn the mixture in an ice-cream maker according to the manufacturer’s directions. It will take 15 – 20 minutes for the ice cream to set. Serve immediately or transfer to a container and store in freezer for firmer texture.