I remember the first time I tried buttermilk. I was visiting my grandparents’ house, something we did often. They always, for better and for worse, let us have the run of the refrigerator and pantry; we could pretty much eat whatever we wanted. I think I was probably around 9 years old or so, and I had never tasted or really even knew much about buttermilk. I opened the fridge, and there sat a carton. I looked at it for several seconds, thinking about that word, buttermilk. I thought it sounded delicious. Who wouldn’t want to drink that? I got a glass out of the cupboard and poured myself a healthy amount. It looked wonderful. I raised the glass to my lips and took a generous drink.
You know where this is going by now. I made it to the sink before aggressively spitting it out. It was nasty! So bitter and way too thick on my tongue. I frantically started guzzling water, trying to get the sour taste out of my mouth and the unpleasant coating off my tongue. In some ways, that day was a learning experience for me. I learned that just because something sounds delectable, doesn’t mean it will be so. But in other ways, that day was not a learning experience. I decided right then and there that buttermilk was disgusting and served no purpose in life. I was very wrong. Buttermilk is a wonderful ingredient, just not to drink! I use buttermilk all the time in my cooking. It’s a terrific alternative to an egg wash before frying a piece of chicken or fish. It works to tenderize the protein and makes the final product really moist. I also use buttermilk as the base of dressings, particularly Ranch and Blue Cheese. It’s also a great ingredient in biscuits, pancakes, and waffles. So you could say that I’ve definitely revised my opinion on buttermilk.
But Buttermilk Ice Cream?? That still gave me pause. When I ran across this recipe initially, I raised my eyebrows and turned the page. But I had to admit it was intriguing. I kept returning to it. So last week, I had an almost full carton of leftover buttermilk and decided it was time to give this ice cream a try. It was very simple to make. I am still not completely certain if I like it or not. I certainly don’t hate it, seeing as I managed to eat an entire bowl of it. But the flavor is not one you’d associate with ice cream. It’s sweet, but a bit sour, too. The recipe suggested putting a scoop of it atop apple pie, and I can completely see how that would work beautifully. I didn’t have any apple pie, though, and the ice cream on its own was a little odd to my palate. But I still wanted to blog it, and I may very well make it again the next time we have apple pie. If you are brave enough to make it, drop me a comment and let me know what you think. Enjoy!
Source: Donald Link, “Real Cajun”
1 quart well-shaken buttermilk
1 pint heavy cream
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
Combine the ingredients in a large bowl and chill for 30 minutes. Transfer the mixture to your ice cream maker and follow manufacturer’s instructions. Transfer the ice cream to a container and freeze for a few hours before serving.