Toasted Quinoa, Gin-Gins, and Fig Ice Cream Sundae with Pistachios and Mascarpone by Jan Hayes & Bob Arnove


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Toasted Quinoa, Gin-Gins, and Fig Ice Cream Sunday with Pistachios and Mascarpone
(Alternatively, garnished with crystalized ginger and fig slices)

This sensational and inspirational dessert combines the honey sweetness of figs with the subtle nut flavors of toasted quinoa and the tanginess of candied ginger. Together the combined ingredients infuse the ice cream flavored with nut meg and mascarpone to leave on your palate a feeling of total contentment. An independent judge, when asked what adjective immediately described the dish, responded “wonderful” followed by “I’ve never tasted anything like it before.’ Then, “The ice cream had a special firmness to it.” Finally, — and this is only for those sixteen and older – with a smile — “I would like to rub it all over my wife tonight” What better compliment could any culinary creations receive?

Serves Four
Ice cream ingredients:
One cup of heavy cream
Three-quarters of a cup plus, whole milk/half and half
Two tablespoons of mascarpone
Four egg yolks,
Half a cup plus of sugar fine sugar
Pinch of salt
Freshly grated nutmeg to taste
Half a cup of quinoa (white and red)
Half a cup of pistachios

Lightly toast a half-cup of mixed quinoa (red and white) and put aside to be used later.

Heat cream/milk and mascarpone mixture almost to boiling in a saucepan.
Melt sugar, salt, and one or two gin-gins in saucepan slowly stirring until smooth
Lightly toast a quart to half a cup of dry quinoa in a saucepan at low heat and put aside until ready to add to the finished cream mixture
Whisk egg yolks and slowly (tempering them) into slightly cooled sugar mixture
Then slowly add hot cream mixture
Pass the mixture through a fine sieve
Finally, add toasted quinoa and nutmeg to taste.
Stir well and allow to cool
Pour the mixture into a freezer-proof container and
freeze until almost solid
Remove from the freezer and stir until smooth (to prevent formation of ice crystals)
Return to the freezer and freeze until solid
Remove ten to fifteen minutes before serving to soften a little.

(Basic ice cream recipe minus mascarpone, quinoa, and gin-gins comes
from Farm to Table Cookbook (US, UK, Australia, EU: Paradigm Books, Love Foods, 2010 edition, p.48).

Sauce Recipe
Quarter cup of filtered water
One to two gin-gins
Quarter cup of dry figs (optional whether sliced or diced)
Quarter cup of brown sugar
A splash of toasted sesame oil
A teaspoon of butter
A splash of vanilla extract
A splash of rum (optional – but delicious)
Quarter a cup of real maple syrup
A pinch of salt

Stir slowly over low heat until mixture is smooth and shiny (figs may still be in pieces)
Put aside to cool

When finished scoop your ice cream into a bowl, serve garnished with sliced dry figs and crystallized ginger.

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