Salted caramel is one of my new favorite foods. It’s been incorporated into chocolate sauce, added to the long list of frozen yogurt flavors, and introduced as an important layer in various desserts. While candy making is not part of my kitchen expertise, I was intrigued enough to make some myself. I had to make it twice to get it right but it was well worth the work and finally the two eight-ounce mason jars I kept in my refrigerator.
Never one to miss an opportunity to create something new with my ice cream maker; plain old vanilla, even with salted caramel, just wasn’t going to create much happiness in my freezer. This past spring, not long after my salted caramel experiment, I saw Meyer lemons in Fairway. I’d never used, tasted, or cooked with a Meyer lemon before. They look a lot like regular lemons, but are brighter with a smoother skin. Adding lemon juice to milk and cream seemed less than ideal, but the zest (or skin) was a much more viable option. I’ve used the zest of citrus fruits in various other recipes, and have never been disappointed. In the end, I was not this time either. There was a lot of ice cream being made in my house this past April, but this was one of the favorites for both kids and adults.
Meyer Lemon and Salted Caramel Ice Cream
1 Cup whole milk
2 Cups heavy cream
3/4 Cup sugar
1 Tablespoon vanilla
Finely grated zest of 1 Meyer lemon
1/2 Cup (or more if you want) of salted caramel
Place sugar in a large bowl.
Add milk and stir with a wire whisk or hand mixer until sugar is dissolved.
Add vanilla and heavy cream and mix until well blended.
Place in the freezer bowl of the ice cream maker and process for 20 minutes.
Add lemon zest while ice cream is blending. Process until zest is well blended (about 5 more minutes)
With machine still blending, add salted caramel until there is a good swirl through ice cream.
Place in a container and freeze until firm.
Notes from my experience:
When zesting a lemon (or any other citrus fruit) be sure to grate only the colorful part of the rind and not the white pith underneath as it tends to be more bitter.
Apples and caramel are delicious, but Meyer lemons and caramel are even better. There is a combination of sweet, sour, and salty in this recipe that was unique to ice cream and the best surprise was that both adults and children loved it.