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Basil Ice Cream

Katie Quinn

This homemade Basil Ice cream is as delicious as easy to make.



  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1.5 ounces (3 tablespoon) cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 1.4 cups heavy cream
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoon light corn syrup
  • 1 large handful of fresh basil leaves, roughly torn into small pieces
  • For the Honey Pine Nut Pralines: 1 cup pine nuts 2 tablespoon light brown sugar 2 tablespoon honey 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt

Let's get Cooking...

  1. Mix 2 tablespoons of the milk with the cornstarch in a small bowl to make a smooth slurry.
  2. Whisk the cream cheese and salt in a medium bowl until smooth. For cooling later, fill a large bowl with ice and water.
  3. Combine the remaining milk, the cream, sugar, and corn syrup in a 4-quart saucepan to the medium bowl. Then bring to a rolling boil over medium-high heat, and boil for 4 minutes. Remove from the heat and gradually whisk in the cornstarch slurry.
  4. Bring the mixture back to a boil over medium-high heat and cook. Stir with a heatproof spatula, until slightly thickened, for about 1 minutes. Remove from the heat.
  5. Gradually whisk the hot milk into the cream cheese until smooth. And add the basil. Then pour the mixture into a 1-gallon Ziploc freezer bag and submerge the sealed bag in the ice bath. Let stand, adding more ice as necessary, until cold, about 30 minutes.
  6. Strain out the basil. Then pour the ice cream base into the frozen canister and spin until thick and creamy. Pack the ice cream into a storage container, folding in the honey pine nut pralines as you go. Press a sheet of parchment directly against the surface and seal with an airtight lid. Freeze in the coldest part of your freezer until firm, at least 4 hours.
  7. For the Honey Pine Nut Pralines: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Combine the nuts with the remaining ingredients in a bowl, tossing to coat. Spread out on a baking sheet and bake for 8 minutes. Stir and then bake for another 5-6 minutes, stirring twice more; the nuts should look bubbly and somewhat dry. Remove from the oven and let cool completely, stirring the nuts every couple of minutes to break them up.