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Apricot and Praline Ice Cream

Apricot and Praline Ice Cream
Apricots are abundant in June and July, the perfect time to savor this ice cream. If desired, serve scoops in waffle cones, either homemade or store bought.

Ingredients:

For the praline:

  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup blanched slivered almonds, lightly
      toasted

  • 3/4 cup sweet Muscat wine
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. black peppercorns
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 lb. ripe apricots, peeled, halved and pitted
  • 2 cups heavy cream

Directions:

To make the praline, lightly oil a baking sheet. In a small heavy-bottomed saucepan over low heat, heat the sugar and water, shaking the pan occasionally, until the sugar dissolves. Bring to a boil and cook until the mixture is deep amber, 8 to 10 minutes. Stir in the almonds; spread thinly on the prepared baking sheet. When the praline is cold, crush it into small pieces. Set aside.

In a large saucepan over medium heat, heat the wine, water, sugar, peppercorns and cinnamon stick, stirring occasionally, until the sugar dissolves. Bring to a boil and add the apricots. Return to a boil, then reduce the heat to low. Cover and cook until the apricots are tender, about 10 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the apricots to a bowl and set aside.

Boil the syrup until reduced to 2 cups, about 30 minutes. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into another bowl and discard the aromatics. Let the syrup cool completely, then cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

Meanwhile, using a potato masher, roughly mash the apricots; they need not be too smooth. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

In a bowl, beat the cream until very soft peaks form, then mix in the cold syrup. Transfer to an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer's instructions. Transfer the ice cream to a chilled container and fold in the apricots and praline. Cover and freeze until ready to serve. Makes 7 cups.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma TASTE Magazine, "Inside Scoop," by Susie Theodorou (Summer 2002).