FOOD & DRINK / A-Z of Treats: Ice-cream

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The Independent Culture
I is for ice-cream, continuing our alphabet of sweet indulgences. If you have an ice-cream maker you can easily make your own, but even if you haven't you can manage this with patience, removing the mixture from your freezer tray every half hour and whisking to beat out the ice crystals as they form. Egon Ronay and his wife Barbara developed this ice-cream after tasting one similar made by a Burmese cook.

TEA ICE-CREAM

Serves 4-6

1 pint double cream

2 1/2 oz sugar

3 egg yolks

3 heaped teaspoons Assam tea

4 heaped teaspoons Orange Pekoe tea

2 tablespoons dark rum

In a bowl, beat the yolks to a pale cream. Bring the cream to the boil in a saucepan, stirring constantly. Remove from the heat and add the tea. Infuse for five minutes.

Strain through a fine sieve and slowly pour on to the egg mixture, beating steadily. Transfer to a saucepan and heat carefully without boiling. Heat until mixture coats the back of a spoon. Remove from the heat and keep stirring for two more minutes. Leave to cool before adding the rum.

Set the fridge to its coldest temperature. Spoon the mixture into a suitable container and freeze for 2 to 3 hours, removing every 30 minutes and whisking to break up ice crystals as they form. Remove from fridge for about five minutes before serving.

You can make vanilla ice- cream by the same method, substituting vanilla essence for tea, or preferably adding a vanilla pod to the cream as you boil it.

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