My introduction to passion fruit (maracuya) came when I was teaching in Bogota, Colombia, where they enjoy a wonderful myriad of fruit. The locals and other teachers who had been there for a while taught me about the different fruits and showed me how to make juices from the frozen pulps that were available in all the stores. My favorites were maracuya and lulo, though I also enjoyed papaya, guava, and raspberry (frambuesa). Fresh maracuya is not widely available in our area, and when it is in the stores it comes with a high price tag. Goya has a range of frozen tropical fruit pulps that many of our local grocery stores sell, so I can still indulge my tropical fruit temptations without putting a serious dent in my budget.
This passion fruit ice cream has been on my list of things to try since I saw the photo in my copy of Spain and the World Table. The food stylist made a simple and beautiful presentation with a single scoop of ice cream and some colorful edible flowers. Though the original recipe called for hazelnuts, I used some of our macadamia nut stash that I brought back from Hawaii, and we really enjoyed the combination.
Passion Fruit Ice Cream with Macadamia Nuts
- medium heavy saucepan with lid
- large bowl
- medium bowl, one that will nest inside the larger bowl
- ice cream freezer
- 1⅔ cups heavy cream
- ⅔ cup milk
- ⅓ vanilla bean (split lengthwise and scraped)
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar
- 4 egg yolks
- ½ cup passion fruit puree
- ¼ cup roughly chopped macadamia nuts (or hazelnuts as in original, plus more for garnish)
- edible flowers (for garnish, such as nasturtiums or pansies, optional)
- In the saucepan, stir together the heavy cream, milk, and vanilla bean. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and cover. Allow to steep for about 15 minutes.
- Pour 1 cup of ice and 1 cup of water into the large bowl.
- In the medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and sugar. Return the cream mixture to the burner and bring back to a simmer over medium heat. Ladle ½ cup of the cream mixture into the eggs and whisk slowly to temper. Pour all the egg yolk mixture into the saucepan and whisk over medium-low heat. Stir constantly with a wooden spoon until the mixture thickens and your finger leaves a trail on the spoon.
- Strain the mixture into the medium bowl and set it in the ice bath. Whisk in the passion fruit puree. Cool in the ice bath, stirring constantly, until the mixture cools completely. Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight. It should be very cold before churning.
- Prepare your ice cream freezer according to the manufacturers directions. Freeze the custard in the machine, and add the chopped macadamia nuts during the last five minutes of churning. Transfer to another container and freeze for at least three more hours before serving.