Apricot ice cream

Serves 6

150g/5oz caster sugar
250ml/8fl oz water
1 punnet apricots, split in half with their kernels removed
4tsp sherry (preferably Fino)
The zest of one orange
The zest of one lemon
4tsp sherry (preferably Fino)
The zest of one orange
The zest of one lemon
For the custard
6 egg yolks
160g/51/2oz caster sugar
2 vanilla pods, split in half lengthwise
300ml/10fl oz milk
300ml/10fl oz double cream

Place the sugar and water in a saucepan over a medium heat and gently bring to the boil. Add the apricots and turn the heat down. Poach until soft and falling apart. Remove the cooked apricots with a slotted spoon and, while hot, purée in a blender. Set aside to cool.

To make the custard, put the milk, cream and vanilla pods in a pan. Place over a medium heat and bring to a simmer. Once the milk begins to boil, remove it from the heat immediately. Set aside for 5 minutes to infuse.

Place the yolks and sugar in a bowl and beat to combine. Pour the milk over the yolks, stirring as you do so. Return the mixture to the pan and place over the lowest possible heat. Stir with a wooden spoon until the mixture begins to thicken (leaving a trail on your spoon). Be patient - this may take 5 or 6 minutes and don't be tempted to turn up the heat as the custard may curdle. When thickened, remove from the heat and allow to cool.

Once both the custard and apricot purée are at room temperature, combine and pour into your ice-cream maker. Follow the manufacturer's instructions.

Once set, scoop into bowls, sprinkle on the zest and spoon the sherry over it. Serve at once. (omega)