March is here and I have a full-blown case of spring fever. Wyoming has been teasing us with a few nice days here and there and I am so ready to enjoy some bright spring flavors. Blueberry and lemon are a classic flavor combo that will never get old. This recipe was born out of a need to use up some buttermilk (hello buttermilk biscuits) and a love for ice cream (obviously). It's tangy, not too sweet, and perfectly refreshing.
Since this recipe uses half buttermilk, it doesn't have the same texture as a typical ice cream. It's more like a cross between a frozen yogurt and a sorbet with ribbons of blueberry jam and crunch from the shortbread cookies. I like to use wild blueberries for ice cream because they're tiny so you're not biting into a huge frozen blueberry. Plus, you know how I feel about wild foods. Yes, those are regular, fresh blueberries in the picture. But they were so pretty I couldn't help but use them.
One trick I always like to use for ice cream is to add a liqueur of some type. Alcohol doesn't freeze so adding a little bit helps keep your ice cream from forming large ice crystals. This is especially helpful when you're working with something like buttermilk that doesn't have as much fat as whipping cream. Blackberry brandy works great for this recipe because of the flavor profile and color. Next time you have some leftover buttermilk, whip out your ice cream maker and try something different!
Blueberry Buttermilk Ice Cream with Shortbread Crumble
- Ice Cream Maker
- 1 ½ cups buttermilk
- 1 ½ cups heavy whipping cream
- ¼ cup honey
- ¼ cup sugar
- ¼ cup wild blueberry jam
- 2 lemons, zested and juiced
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon blackberry brandy (or other liqueur)
- ⅓ cup wild blueberry jam
- 5 shortbread cookies, crushed
- ⅓ cup frozen wild blueberries
- Combine whipping cream, honey, sugar, and blueberry jam in a medium saucepan. Heat just until sugar dissolves, whisking frequently. Transfer to a glass bowl. Refrigerate until cold, about 2 hours.
- To cream mixture, add buttermilk, lemon zest and juice, vanilla, and blackberry brandy. Whisk until well-combined.
- Follow ice cream maker instructions for making ice cream. Mine takes about 20 minutes to churn.
- Once ice cream is almost finished churning, heat blueberry jam just enough to make it easier to work with.
- Add ⅓ of ice cream to a loaf pan or other dish, drizzle ⅓ of blueberry jam over the ice cream and swirl it in with a table knife. Top with ½ of frozen blueberries and ⅓ of crushed cookies. Repeat twice but only top with jam and cookie crumbs on the final layer. You will have 3 layers of ice cream total. Cover and freeze until solid, about 4 hours. Serve and enjoy!