Too hot to sleep.
Instead, I was wasting the soup-thick moonlit hours lingering over images,
finding inspiration but not the energy to do anything with it.
I paused for a long time on Local Milk's post about honeysuckle.
It sounded like a dream.
And at this point, it was a dream.
The summer sun had long ago dried the sweet blossoms that grow like wild weeds around the perimeter of the yard.
So, when the tiny flowers bloomed again come late spring,
I kept my promise.
On a particularly bright and sticky late Sunday morning I set out,
my bare legs seemingly singing out a silent siren's call to every mosquito in a ten mile radius.
But I didn't care.
I was gathering honeysuckle with intent.
I just didn't quite know what that intent was yet.
Eggs. Sugar. Cream.
Such deceptively simple ingredients yielding infinite possibilities.
Ice cream it would be.
And ice cream it was.
I set forth, sans recipe, with a vague knowledge of what I was doing and a whole lot of honeysuckle.
And, you guys, it was a dream.
A perfectly captured, edible snapshot of summer.
Honeysuckle Ice Cream
4 cups honeysuckle
2 cups whole milk
2 cups heavy cream
8 large egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
pinch of salt
Gently rinse the honeysuckle, picking out any leaves. Allow to dry on a towel.
Combine the honeysuckle flower, milk, and cream in a bowl.
Cover and let sit in the refrigerator 24 hours.
Strain the milk and cream through cheesecloth or a fine mesh strainer into a heavy saucepan.
Bring the mixture to a boil; remove from heat.
Whisk the egg yolks, sugar, and salt in a large bowl.
While still whisking, very slowly add the hot cream mixture into the bowl
(you'll want to keep whisking so you don't cook the eggs).
Return the mixture to the pan and cook over medium-high heat until a candy thermometer registers 170 degrees F.
Pour the mixture through a strainer into a large bowl.
Place the covered bowl in the refrigerator overnight or until the custard becomes chilled.
Pour the chilled mixture into the bowl of your ice cream maker and follow manufacturer's instructions.
Place finished ice cream into an air tight container and place in freezer for a couple of hours before serving.