No, I haven’t finally taken leave of my senses! This is indeed a recipe for pickle ice cream…with peanut butter. Peanut butter caramel at that. Whist it might sound like I’ve thrown everything at this but the kitchen sink, all for the sake of sensationalist recipes, as ever there is method in my wild thinking.
For starters July is both National Pickle Month AND national Ice Cream month. See? Already I have a reason! I’ll have to come clean though, admitting I’m not an fan of pickles myself. The texture that is. The zesty, vinegar flavour has however proved quite addictive to me over the years. Which is where this recipe is a win.
The ice cream here carries the zesty, almost herbaceous flavour of the pickle itself without any of the (for me) unappealing nubs of vegetable. It carries a certain freshness to it which makes consuming it on Summer days all the more appealing.
So where does the peanut butter come on? Well, as so is often the case with me I fell down a food rabbit hole whilst doing research on the ever so humble pickle and its varying uses. One of the ones that popped up and immediately piqued my interest was the “PB & P” sandwich- Peanut Butter & Pickle. The peanut butter and pickle sandwich isn’t some new viral trend but has in fact been a low-profile favorite in the U.S. since it appeared on deli counters during the Great Depression. A little mentioned stalwart of many a grandparent out there it would seem. On trying it, the way that the creamy peanut butter plays off the crunchy, briny pickle is really kind of amazing. Give it a go!
Salted caramel swirl ice cream is one of my favorites- both taste and visuals are satiated tracing the sweet rivulets through sweet creamy mounds. So why not include that here. I use peanut butter as a base for the caramel swirl in order to tie all my reference points together – paying homage to bygone favorites with a nod to my own personal ones. And hey, it’s Summer! Who doesn’t like ice cream?
Check out this #recipe for Pickle Ice Cream w/ Peanut Butter Caramel SwirlTweet
Pickle Ice Cream
- 2 half-sour pickles
- 1/4 cup pickle brine
- 8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
- One 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
- 1 Tablespoon honey
- 2 cups heavy cream
Peanut Butter Caramel
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 3 Tablespoons smooth peanut butter
- 1 Teaspoon light corn syrup, or glucose
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
Peanut Butter Caramel
- Heat granulated sugar and glucose in a heavy-duty saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly (use a heat-resistant spoon or spatula). Melt the sugar into a thick brown, amber-colored liquid as you continue to stir. Be careful not to burn it!
- Once sugar is completely melted, immediately stir in the peanut butter until melted and fully combined. The caramel will bubble rapidly when the peanut butter is added.
- Return to heat when it’s combined and cook for 1 minute without stirring
- Remove from the heat and carefully stir in the heavy cream in a slow, steady stream. There will be a steamy reaction so please be careful! After all the heavy cream has been added, stop stirring and allow to boil for 1 minute. Keeping watching in case it bubble sup too much. If it does, reduce the heat.
- Remove from heat and stir in the salt. Set aside to cool to room temperature before using in the ice cream. The sauce will thicken as it cools
Pickle Ice Cream
- Combine the pickles and brine in the carafe of a blender, then blend until pureed, about 1 minute
- Strain the puree and discard any pulp. Save 1/3 cup pickle liquid and discard the rest
- Beat the cream cheese in a large bowl with a mixer on medium-high speed until smooth and creamy
- Add the condensed milk, honey and pickle liquid to the cream cheese and continue to mix until smooth
- In a separate large bowl whip the heavy cream until firm peaks form. Fold in 1 cup of the whipped cream into the condensed milk/ pickle mixture until combined
- Fold this lightened mixture into the whipped cream until well blended, being careful not to overwhip in case you deflate the mixture
- Pour 1/3 of the mixture into a plastic container, or loaf pan, cover and freeze, for 1 hour. Keep the cream/ pickle mix in the fridge, covered
- Remove from the freezer and drizzle over 1/2 caramel sauce in swirling pattern. Pour over another 1/3 of the cream/pickle mixture and return the ice cream to the freezer for another hour
- Repeat Step 8 as above with the remaining caramel sauce and cream/pickle mixture. Before returning to the freezer run a chop stick or knife through the ice cream the swirl the mixtures together.
- Cover and return to the freezer for minimum hours, or overnight.
- To serve, remove the ice cream from the freezer 5-10 minutes before serving so that it is scoopable