Dabbous's Strawberries With Tahitian Vanilla Ice Cream

To top off a week of Dabbous recipes, this delightful take on strawberries with cream is simply perfection. The flavours of Mara des bois strawberries and Tahitian vanilla pods are carefully paired together for a winning combination.

This is unquestionably my favourite ice cream. Tahitian vanilla is excruciatingly expensive but worth every penny. The taste is more marshmallow-like, virginal and rounded than that of Madagascan vanilla, which tastes positively medicinal alongside. Mara des Bois strawberries, at their best, have a floral violet aftertaste and a sweetness beyond most other varieties.

This recipe is taken from the beautiful, recently published Dabbous: The Cookbook. Many thanks to Dabbous Restaurant and Bloomsbury Publishing for sharing such a delightful recipe with us.

 For the Tahitian vanilla ice cream Serves: 8

For the strawberry juice

  • 500g strawberries
  • 250ml water
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 1 lemongrass stick, bruised and chopped
  • ½ vanilla pod, slit open lengthwise
  • 30ml lemon juice

To assemble

  • 32 Mara des Bois strawberries, cut in half, plus 8 small strawberries, stem on, to decorate icing sugar
  • Lemon juice
  • 24 basil leaves

Tahitian vanilla ice cream

  1. Put the milk and cream in a pan and heat to 84°C.
  2. Add all the powders, plus the sugar and glucose, and combine with a hand blender to dissolve.
  3. Add the vanilla pod and seeds, remove from the heat and transfer to a container.
  4. Cover with cling film and leave to cool.
  5. Leave to mature in the fridge overnight.
  6. The next day, remove the vanilla pod and blend the mixture with a hand blender to emulsify.
  7. Pass through a fine sieve.
  8. Churn in an ice-cream machine, then transfer to a chilled container and store in the freezer.

Strawberry juice

  1. Purée the strawberries in a blender until smooth.
  2. Pass the purée through a fine sieve.
  3. Bring the water and sugar to the boil, then remove from the heat and add the lemongrass and vanilla.
  4. Cover with a lid and leave to cool.
  5. Add the strawberry purée and lemon juice and chill overnight.
  6. Pass through a fine sieve and store on ice for 30 minutes before serving.

To assemble

  1. Remove the ice cream from the freezer and beat it to soften it a little.
  2. Season the strawberries with icing sugar and lemon juice, then leave for 2 minutes to macerate.
  3. Divide between 8 glass dishes, top with the basil leaves and spoon over a little of the strawberry juice.
  4. Place the ice cream in a piping bag with a star-shaped nozzle and pipe on top.
  5. Top with the strawberries with stems on.
  6. Serve with a jug of strawberry juice alongside.

Extract taken from Dabbous by Ollie Dabbous, published by Bloomsbury Publishing, £50.00, Hardback.

Photography © Joakim Blockstorm


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