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Tea and Biscuits Ice Cream

GoodFood Magazine suggests that this is a “restaurant-standard dessert,” and we wholeheartedly agree! Sublimely flavoured with essence of bergamot, the tea-infused ice cream is divinely smooth and rich, yet light on the palate; the caramelly biscuit crumbs provide a contrast in texture and compliment in flavour — all of which serves to render each plateful a study in understated elegance!

Tea and Biscuits Ice Cream

For the ice cream

13½ fl. oz heavy cream, divided
12 fl. oz. whole milk
2 large egg yolks
1½ tbs. cornstarch
3½ oz. caster (superfine white) sugar (½ cup)
½ tsp. vanilla extract
3 Earl Grey teabags

For the biscuits

5 ¼ oz. golden caster sugar (¾ cup)
6 digestive biscuits, crushed into crumbs

Put 3½ fl. oz. of the heavy cream and the milk into a medium pan and gently bring to just below boiling point. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk the yolks, cornstarch, sugar, and vanilla. Gradually pour the hot milk mixture into the sugar mixture, whisking constantly.

Wipe out the saucepan and pour the mixture back into it. Heat gently, stirring with a wooden spoon right into the corners of the pan so that you’ll notice if the custard catches before thickening. If it does, turn down the heat, then carry on patiently until it starts to thicken a little. When it begins to coat the back of your spoon as you lift it out of the custard, it’s nearly ready. Keep a very close eye on the custard from now on – when it is thick enough to draw your finger through the coating on the back of the spoon leaving a clear line, it’s ready. Turn off the heat straight away to prevent lumps forming, then set aside to cool completely.

Bring 5 fl. oz. of the heavy cream to the boil in a small saucepan with the teabags, then remove from the heat and leave to infuse, gently pressing the teabags against the side of the pan to release all the flavour and turn the cream a milky tea colour. Leave to cool completely, then give the teabags a final squeeze before removing them. Pour the cream into a bowl with the cooled custard and mix together.

Lightly whisk the remaining cream and fold through the custard mixture. If you have an ice cream machine, use it, or freeze the mixture, whisking well every couple of hours until completely frozen. Can be made a month in advance. Remove from the freezer and put in the fridge 1 hour before serving to soften.

For the biscuits, heat  frying pan over a medium heat until very hot, scatter over the sugar and cook, stirring, to golden caramel. Scatter over and stir in the biscuit crumbs. Immediately tip onto a tray lined with baking parchment and leave to harden. Break into small pieces and tip into a food processor, then blitz until the texture of rough crumbs again. Can be made 3 days ahead and kept in an airtight container.

To serve, put a pile of crumbs in the middle of each plate and top with a scoop of ice cream.

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