Scooped: Persimmon and Honey Ice Cream

  • to 6 ripe persimmons, depending on size
  • 1 1/2 Cup  heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 Cup  whole milk
  • egg yolks
  • 1/4 Cup  sugar
  • 1/4 Cup  honey
  • to 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 Tablespoon  grated or minced ginger

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Persimmons, clearly golden. Jewish and Chinese holidays, despite some obvious differences, actually have many important features in common. Nothing puts a Jew at ease like a holiday characterized by ancient traditions, delicious foods that represent those traditions, and the widespread exchange of cash. As good Jews, Max and I decided this week to honor Chinese New Years with an ice cream recipe that pays homage to the tradition of using gold-colored ingredients for a rich year. Golden persimmons, golden honey, golden yolks, a touch of golden ginger; you get the picture. The resulting ice cream is smooth and lush, with a hint of honey-and-ginger spice. Chinese desserts are often unfairly maligned for their lack of sweetness, but I appreciate a Cantonese chef's light touch with the sugar. After a complex, multi-course Chinese New Years meal (don't all Jewish families have those?), a subtle, mild dessert is exactly what the (Jewish) doctor ordered. It's even more delicious topped with a ladleful of warm, sweet red bean soup, cooked with orange peel. The more of this ice cream I eat, the more strongly I support further integration of Chinese and Jewish holiday traditions. Lion dancers at the Seder, anyone? About the authors: Ethan Frisch is the chef and co-mastermind behind Guerrilla Ice Cream. He's traveled around the world (30 countries, 5 continents) and worked as a pastry chef and line cook in some of NYC's great (and not so great) restaurants. He currently lives in London, where he really misses New York City tap water. Max Falkowitz writes Serious Eats' weekly Spice Hunting column. He's a proud native of Queens, New York, will do just about anything for a good cup of tea, and enjoys long walks down the aisles of Chinese groceries.

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Recipe Details

Preparation Time: 
40 minutes
Cooking Time: 
7 hours 20 minutes
Total Time: 
8 hours
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