Fany Gerson, chef and owner of La Newyorkina, shares her knowledge of frozen desserts south of the border in Mexican Ice Cream, ranging from boozy margarita flavors to grasshopper-topped sorbet.
In Mexico, helado de queso is usually made with one kind of fresh cheese, requesón, without any other featured ingredients, so the cheese flavor really shines. I absolutely love it, especially when there are a few chunks of cheese to bite into. The texture of this ice cream can be slightly grainy due to the cheese, but it’s truly fantastic.
Occasionally, you will find the helado de queso with fruit mixed in, whether bits of fresh fruit, a jamlike concoction, or fruit paste. The combination is delicious and reminds me of a sort of cheesecake (in fact, feel free to add some crushed Maria cookies to turn it into a cheesecake ice cream).
- In a saucepan, combine the blackberries, confectioner’s sugar, and water. Set the pan over low heat and cook, stirring frequently, until the mixture comes to a boil. Cook for 2 minutes, until it has thickened slightly, then transfer to a bowl. Gently mash the berries with the back of a spoon, cover, and refrigerate until ready to use.
- In a blender or food processor, combine the cream cheese, 3 ounces of the requesón, the half-and-half, granulated sugar, vanilla, salt and corn syrup. Puree until smooth. Transfer to a bowl and add the cream and the remaining 3 ounces of requesón. Whisk gently to combine; the mixture should be slightly chunky. Cover and refrigerate until the base is cold, at least 2 hours or up to overnight.
- Whisk the base to recombine. Freeze and churn in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. When the ice cream has finished churning, mix in the chilled blackberries. For a soft consistency, serve the ice cream right away; for a firmer consistency, transfer it to a container, cover, and allow to harden in a freezer for 2 to 3 hours.
Reprinted with permission from Mexican Ice Cream, copyright © 2017 by Fany Gerson, published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC. Photography copyright © 2017 by Justin Walker