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Peach ice cream is made even better with the addition of pie crust pieces.
Before coming to Texas, peaches weren’t really on my radar. In the Midwest we’re all about apples and berries when it comes to fruit selection, and so any peaches I might have had as a child probably came from a can.
And I probably also didn’t like them.
Fortunately I grew up and developed my taste buds, because the epitome of a Texas summer is gnawing on a fat peach, juices dribbling down your chin and hopefully into the sink you thoughtfully stood over, or on the ground so the ants can get a tiny bit of sweet nectar.
Peach season is very dependent on the weather. We’ve had all sorts of crazy patterns in the past few years, and winter hailstorms can completely knock out an orchard from producing for the year.
Not to mention the ever-present drought, and the need to think of solutions for tending to our crops. It’s not just about giving things water and hoping for more rain; it’s about changing the idea of the landscape we have so carefully crafted into peach (or rice, or grapefruit) havens.
That’s why whenever the peaches show up, we celebrate. We dive in, making sure we get enough for jams, for pies, for just plain eating. And of course, as this is Texas, there is cobbler. And ice cream. So it’s only natural that the two get together.
This dreamy peach cobbler ice cream is made with mascarpone cheese to make it extra creamy and give it a swift kick-in-the-pants tang.
I’ve added homemade pie crust bits dusted with cinnamon and sugar, because why not? Besides, it’s hot out — do you really want to be cooking up a big ol’ cobbler in the middle of summer? Ice cream is where it’s at.
Your first step is to prepare the peach puree. Fresh or frozen work for this recipe, so don’t worry if you can’t get good fresh peacheswhere you are. (In fact, frozen might be easier because they come already peeled.)
To peel fresh peaches, make an X with a paringknife on the bottom of the peach, boil for 1-2 minutes, then plunge into a cold-water bath. The skins will slip right off.
Next, separate the eggs. You only need the yolks for ice cream, but save the whites to make these gorgeous macaroons or an egg-white muffin melt for breakfast. I separate eggs by cracking as evenly as I can then moving the yolk back and forth between the shell halves, letting the white drip into a bowl below.
Get your ice bath and sieve set up before you start heating the cream, as you’ll need to work quickly once the eggs are added. Take care to whisk constantly while adding the cream to the yolks and then cooking the whole mixture so you don’t scramble the eggs. Even if a little gets cooked it will strain out.
Once you have everything mixed together, chill it in the fridge for at least 4 hours before churning in your ice cream maker. Meanwhile, get the pie crust pieces ready. I used a half recipe for pie crust, using 2/3 cup flour, a pinch salt, 4 tablespoons cold butter, and 2-3 tablespoons ice water.
After chilling, I rolled it out, then cut into pieces with a rolling cutter. Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar and bake at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes. Be sure to let the pieces cool completely before adding to the ice cream.
Now, the original recipe as stated makes 1 quart of ice cream, but this was overflowing my 2-quart machine, so don’t go too far away while it’s churning. Take the opportunity to taste test your dessert by scooping a little out if it starts coming out the top of your machine.
After the ice cream is churned, crumble the pie crust pieces and stir them in by hand, or layer crust pieces with ice cream as you pour it into your storage container.
Let it firm up a few hours before serving, and then indulge in this perfectly creamy, dreamy, peach cobbler-inspired dessert!
Peach Cobbler Ice Cream
- 2 cups heavy cream, divided
- 1 cup whole milk
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- Pinch salt
- 5 large egg yolks
- 1-1/2 lb. fresh peaches, or 1-1/3 lb. frozen, peeled, pitted, cooked to soften, and pureed
- 1 cup mascarpone
For the crust
- 2/3 cup flour
- Pinch salt
- 4 tablespoons cold butter
- 2-3 tablespoons ice water
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon sugar
- In a medium saucepan, combine 1 cup of cream with milk, sugar, and salt. Warm over medium-high, stirring occassionally, until sugar is dissolved and small bubbles begin to form around the edge of the pan (3-4 minutes).
- Fill a large bowl with several inches of ice water. Set a smaller 2-quart metal bowl in the ice water. Pour 1 cup cream into inner bowl and set a fine strainer on top.
- Whisk the egg yolks in another bowl and pour in half of the warm cream mixture, whisking constantly to prevent curdling.
- Pour the egg mixture back into the saucepan and cook over low, stirring constantly and scraping the bottom with a silicone spatula. Cook until custard thickens slightly and coats spatula, about 4-8 minutes. Do not let the mixture overheat or boil.
- Strain custard into cold cream in the ice bath. (Don’t worry about curdled bits as they will be strained out.) Stir custard over the ice bath and cool to about 70°F.
- Stir in peach puree and mascarpone, and chill for at least 4 hours.
- Meanwhile, make the pie crust by combining flour, salt, and cold butter until pea-sized crumbs are formed, then slowly add ice water as you bring the dough together. Form into a disc, wrap in plastic, and chill for 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 350°F. After chilling dough, roll out flat and cut into small pieces. Place pieces on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silicone mat. Sprinkle on cinnamon sugar and bake for 15 minutes, or until golden brown. Let cool completely.
- Once ice cream mixture has chilled, churn according to your ice cream maker’s instructions. Transfer to a freezer-safe container, layering in pie crust pieces as you fill the container. Enjoy!
- Adapted from Fine Cooking
- Makes 2 quarts