After being inspired by the ricotta ice cream at Junoon, the Accidental Locavore decided that the end of summer (sob, sob) deserved some homemade ice cream. Turns out that the ricotta version is much easier than making classic ice cream. You don't need to make what is essentially a custard, let it chill and then freeze it, a two to three day process (if you have the patience and time) to do it right. With the ricotta, you just run it through a food processor and ice cream maker. This, I'm guessing, makes a little more than a quart.
Ricotta Ice Cream
2 ½ cups whole milk ricotta
1 cup sugar
¾ teaspoon vanilla
Zest of 1 lemon
Pinch of salt
1 cup heavy cream (preferably not ultra-pasteurized)
Place all the ingredients in the work bowl of the food processor and process until smooth. When it's done, place in the ice cream maker and process until it's frozen. Put in a freezer container and freeze until firm. Serve and enjoy!
My verdict: Super easy and delicious! Unfrozen it tastes like cannoli filling (which it almost is). I used this as an excuse to finally make my own ricotta (easy and delicious, give it a try) and used the whole batch of ricotta for the ice cream. Since I forgot to zest my lemons (used for the ricotta) I used the zest of ½ lemon and most of a lime, which was fine. I think the finished product is a little sweet and next time will start with ½ cup of sugar and go from there. You can add liqueur, rum to the mix and pistachios or chocolate bits at the end if you want. Next time, I think I'll add some chocolate bits just for fun. If you're new to making ice cream or are looking for an excuse to get an ice cream machine, this is a great jumping off point.