spice dream in my ice cream

When invited to the beach this past weekend I was informed that a fellow compatriot would be celebrating her birthday while there. Peach Cake with a Brown Sugar Glaze was planned, a favorite from birthdays past. Naturally, I asked the hostess if I should bring my ice cream maker to prepare the cake’s partner in crime.

Truth be told, as soon as Memorial Day Beach Vacation was mentioned, thoughts of cream frozen with sugar and vanilla had already been dancing in my head. I previously mentioned a brown sugar coconut concoction, but when I thought of the sweetness of cake and glaze, something a bit less traditional crossed my mind.

I began by infusing milk with a bunch of thyme and five black peppercorns. After an almost simmer and 20 minute steep, I strained and mixed in vanilla’s usual soldiers: cream, sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk, vanilla extract, sugar and a pinch of salt. After a taste test I wanted more thyme, so some whole leaves went in and I set the freezer to run. The results were slightly floral with a sweetness brightened by the almost untraceable pepper. A perfect accompaniment to the sweet cake and a glorious final bow to the delicious weekend.

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