Peach Ice Cream With Amaretti and Ginger 12.000

Tom McCorkle for The Washington Post; food styling by Lisa Cherkasky for The Washington Post

Jul 9, 2019

A juicy summer peach eaten out of hand is hard to beat, but this ice cream comes close. The fruit -- enhanced with freeze-dried peaches for extra oomph -- imparts the ice cream base with a subtle flavor and fragrance, which is a match made in heaven with crushed amaretti cookies and bits of crystallized ginger.

Don't be tempted to leave out the corn syrup. It's less sweet than granulated sugar and keeps the churned ice cream from getting icy.

Make Ahead: The ice cream base needs to chill overnight in the refrigerator or, if you are using an ice-water bath (see NOTE, below), at least an hour on the counter. The churned ice cream needs at least 4 hours to set in the freezer.

Where to Buy: Check Italian markets or well-stocked grocery stores for amaretti cookies. We found Matilde Vicenzi brand at Fresh Market.


When you scale a recipe, keep in mind that cooking times and temperatures, pan sizes and seasonings may be affected, so adjust accordingly. Also, amounts listed in the directions will not reflect the changes made to ingredient amounts.

Tested size: 12 servings; makes 1 1/2 quarts

  • 4 medium-size ripe peaches, pitted and coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3/8 ounce freeze-dried peaches (1/2 cup)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (from 1 lemon)
  • 2 2/3 cups whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 2 ounces (4 tablespoons) cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup light corn syrup (see headnote)
  • 3 ounces amaretti cookies (about 26), crushed (about 1 cup)
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped crystallized ginger

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Combine the chopped peaches and 1/4 cup of the sugar in a large (4-quart) saucepan. Cook over medium to medium-high heat to maintain a gentle bubbling, stirring frequently with a spatula, until the fruit has mostly broken down and turned almost jammy, about 20 minutes. Use the spatula to gently mash the fruit until fairly smooth. Cool slightly.

Grind the freeze-dried peaches in a food processor to a fine powder; some larger pieces are okay. Add the cooked peaches and lemon juice; process to form a puree. Pass the puree through a fine-mesh strainer, pressing on the solids to extract as much liquid as possible. Discard the solids. You should have 3/4 to 1 cup strained puree. Cool completely.

Whisk about 2 tablespoons of the milk with the cornstarch in a small bowl to form a smooth slurry.

Whisk together the cream cheese and salt in a medium bowl until smooth.

Combine the remaining milk, the cream, the remaining 3/4 cup sugar and the corn syrup in the saucepan, over medium-high heat. Bring to a rolling boil, reducing the heat as needed to make sure the mixture does not boil over; cook for 4 minutes. Remove from the heat just long enough to gradually whisk in the cornstarch slurry; return the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat and cook for about 1 minute, stirring with a spatula, until slightly thickened, with a consistency a little thicker than heavy cream. Remove from the heat.

Gradually whisk the hot-milk mixture into the cream cheese, until smooth, then whisk in the strained peach puree. Cover the bowl and refrigerate it until thoroughly chilled, at least overnight.

When you are ready to churn, assemble your ice cream machine according to the manufacturer's directions and turn it on. Pour in the chilled ice cream base and spin until it's thick and creamy -- about the consistency of soft-serve ice cream.

Meanwhile, sprinkle about one-quarter of the crushed Amaretti cookies and crystallized ginger onto the bottom of your final storage container. Pack the ice cream into the storage container, alternating it with additional layers of the amaretti and ginger, ending with a layer of the add-ins on top; do not stir (to retain the layering). Press a sheet of parchment paper directly against the surface, and seal with a tight-fitting lid. Freeze in the coldest part of your freezer until firm, for at least 4 hours.

NOTE: If you want to use the base sooner, pour the mixture into a 1-gallon resealable zip-top bag and seal. Submerge the sealed bag in an ice-water bath in a large bowl. Let stand, adding more ice as necessary, until cold, for at least 1 hour.

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Recipe Source

From Voraciously lead writer Becky Krystal; ice cream base adapted from "Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream Desserts" by Jeni Britton Bauer (Artisan, 2014).

Tested by Becky Krystal.

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