July is national ice cream month. It also happens to be national blueberry month. What better way to combine the two than cheesecake ice cream with a blueberry swirl and graham cracker crust? I had conceived this ice cream back in April, when I was blueberry picking every week during the season. For one reason or another, it took another three months before I was able to make some.
It took me two tries to get this ice cream right. The first time, the cheesecake flavor of the ice cream overpowered the blueberry flavor. In fact, I couldn’t taste the blueberry at all. So I reduced the sour cream, and the flavors merged much better. Now I have a double batch of ice cream hanging around my freezer. I’ve been giving lots away to neighbors and friends.
- For the blueberry swirl: In a small saucepan, crush the blueberries with a potato masher. Stir in the sugar. Set over medium-high heat and bring to a boil. While the blueberries are heating up, form a slurry by
- stirring together the cornstarch and water in a small bowl. Add the slurry to the blueberries, stirring constantly. Continue stirring for one minute as the mixture thickens up. Remove from heat and stir in the lemon juice. Pour blueberry mixture into a heatproof bowl, cover, and chill until cooled. Keep in refrigerator until ready to add to the ice cream.
- For the graham cracker crust: Preheat oven to 375°F. Mix together graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and salt in a bowl. Add the melted butter and mix until well combined. Press mixture into a thin, even layer in the bottom of an 8x8” baking pan. Bake until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. Break into pieces, and store in an air-tight container until ready to add to ice cream.
- For the cheesecake ice cream: In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth. Add sugar and continue to beat until fluffy. Add the sour cream, heavy cream, salt, lemon juice, and vanilla and beat until smooth. Cover and chill overnight.
- When ready to churn, remove mixture from refrigerator. Whisk a little to make sure the mixture has no lumps. Churn in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. When the ice cream has finished churning, remove the attachment. Crumble ¾ of the graham cracker crust into the ice cream and mix well. (Use the remaining graham cracker crust to garnish individual servings.) Spoon the blueberry mixture into the bowl and mix just enough to swirl through the ice cream. Pour ice cream into a freezer-safe container and freeze until hardened.