California Fresh Apricot Ice Cream Receipe

Fresh ripe California apricots are irresistible and a delicious and healthy way to usher in the first taste of summer. As the harbinger of great summer produce, sweet and succulent California apricots are available, mid-May to mid-July and consumer demand for these fine fruits continues to grow. California apricots deliver high amounts of vitamin A and vitamin C, along with a good amount of potassium and fiber that makes eating "9-A-Day" a real joy. The new USDA Dietary Guidelines (2005) recommend 9 servings of fruits and vegetables daily with at least 2 cups of fruit. Three fresh apricots are considered 1 serving of fruit.

California Apricots are great to have on hand for snacks and dessert. Delicious on their own, California apricots are also praised for their versatility by world class chefs and home cooks. From chutneys and salsas, to waffles, salads, cobblers and pies, California Apricots are the star ingredient in a wonderfully diverse range of dishes. A family favorite and guaranteed crowd pleaser is -- California Apricot Ice Cream -- made either the old-fashioned way or the quick and easy version. And, isn't it nice to know that somethingthat tastes so good is also good for you?

The average size of the fresh crop is up to 1.5 million 24-pound boxes. No matter how long the season, the time to partake of California Apricots is still only a matter of weeks and then the opportunity is gone. Why not be a culinary hero and treat friends and family to fresh California Apricot Ice Cream?

Apricot Ice Cream

1 Skimmed Evaporated Milk, can (12 ounces)
1 Envelope Plain Gelatin
3/4 Cup Sugar
1-1/2 Cups Diced, Ripe Fresh California Apricots (about ¾ lbs)
1 Apricot Nectar, can (12 ounces)
2 Cups Plain Low-Fat Yogurt
1 Teaspoon Vanilla or 1/2 Teaspoon Grated Orange Peel
7 lbs. Small Ice Cubes
1 Cup Rock salt or Table salt, according to ice cream maker

Combine milk and gelatin in large saucepan. Heat, stirring often, until gelatin dissolves. Add sugar and heat until it dissolves. Using a wire whip, stir in apricots, apricot nectar, yogurt, and vanilla. Pour mixture into canister of ice cream maker and assemble the machine. Make alternate layers of ice and salt around the canister. Churn 20 to 30 minutes or until softly frozen. Pack into containers and freeze. For best flavor, let ice cream soften slightly before serving. Makes about 2 quarts.

Fast and Fresh California Apricot Ice Cream

1 Quart Vanilla ice cream, softened
1 lb. Ripe, fresh California apricots, diced

Quickly stir ice cream and apricots together in large bowl to combine, spoon into freezer container. Freeze for 1 hour; stir mixture to get an even distribution of apricots. Return to freezer and freeze for 3 hours or until firm. Place ice cream in refrigerator 15 minutes before serving to soften slightly. Makes about 4-1/2 cups.

Apricot Ice Cream Photo (RGB JPEG @ 150dpi)

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California Apricots