The fruit bowl really was bare, except for a few forlorn-looking apples, so I went back to the pantry and spied a can of Solo cherry pie filling that had been stuck in there for at least a year. Hmm, thinks I to myself. Cherry ice cream> Mmmmaybe… then I remembered that we had a couple pints of sour cream to use up. Sour cream and cherries made me think of cheesecake, and so I went looking for a cherry cheesecake recipe. I found a few online, but none included the chunks of crust that I wanted.
Chocolate “dirt” or “soil” is kind of a trendy thing these days. The Momofuku Milk Bar book had a whole section on these milky crumbles that they included in desserts. But I didn’t see a crumble that matched what I had in mind: the graham cracker crust of a cheesecake. So I made one up!
Cherry Cheesecake Ice Cream
(My recipe, with an assist from Momofuku Milk Bar and The Perfect Scoop)
1/2 packet of graham crackers, crumbled
1/8 cup dry instant milk powder
1 tablespoon sugar (I used vanilla sugar, stored with spent vanilla bean pods)
Generous pinch salt
1/8 cup melted butter
1/8 cup cream
Mix the dries together, then mix the wets and combine. Toss with hands and spread onto cookie sheet lined with a Silpat. Bake at 350 degrees for about 15-20 minutes (don’t overbrown). They will be moist when they come out of the oven; don’t worry, they crisp right up. Break into small bits.
8 oz. packaged of cream cheese, cut into chunks
Zest from one lemon
1 cup sour cream
1 cup whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup sugar
Pinch of salt
1 small can prepared cherry filling
Puree all ingredients EXCEPT cherry filling together in food processor, and chill for one hour. Mix according to your machine’s instructions. Towards the end of the mixing time, add the can of cherry filling and the cooled crumbles. Run the machine just long enough to barely incorporate the cherries and crumbles.
This turned out to be a very rich and delicious dessert, and everyone loved it. It was a bit fussy, with the extra level of messiness with the crumble, but the effect was worth it. And I had made a double batch of the crumbles, so we have leftovers for topping or another recipe in the future. A win-win!