June 29, 2011

Strawberry-Lemon Verbena Ice Cream {Naptime Everyday}

Strawberry Lemon Verbena Ice Cream

What’s Going on Today: Early 5:30am wake-up call! Farmer’s market, laundry, camp!

Tonight’s Menu: Grilled Lemon Rosemary Chicken, Couscous Salad, Strawberry-Lemon Verbena Ice Cream

Naptime Goals: Make ice-cream base to all the herbs to steep!

This kid is killing me with the 5:30am wake-ups. I swear, I am this close to lining her windows with black electrical tape and turning her bedroom into a cave. The reason she keeps waking me up, she says, is because the sun is already up. (I don’t miss winter weather one bit, but I do miss the 7:15am sunrises!) One of our favorite early summer activities in strawberry picking. Being this tired means that it feels like 1pm, not 10am, when we go to the fields. Naptime feels like dinner hour, and I usually loose track of time completely by late afternoon. Since it felt like dinnertime when I was working on the strawberries last week it should come as no surprise that I was craving ice cream. My body was sure I’d already eaten dinner (it was, in fact, lunch) and was in the mood for something cool and sweet.

Instead of making a complicated egg custard based ice cream, I decided to make some strawberry ice-cream Philadelphia-style (i.e., no eggs). I also wanted to give it a twist by steeping the milk with lemon verbena leaves to give it a unique herbal twist. During naptime I warmed the milk and sugar and added the verbena leaves to the pot. With the heat off, the leaves steeped for an hour or so. Then, I popped it in the fridge to chill for the rest of the afternoon.

Right before dinner I poured the cream mixture into the ice cream maker, straining out the leaves as it went in. I also added several freshly sliced strawberries and turned on the machine to let it churn. Since I like to eat the ice cream on the softer side I tried a few quick spoonfuls and instantly fell in love. The creamy vanilla base had a subtle lemony herb flavor. The sliced strawberries were distributed evenly throughout the mixture, their delicious sweet berry flavor present in each bite. My daughter agreed that it was good, but prefers my classic recipe for her favorite mint chocolate chip. I promised I’d make her a fresh batch if she stayed in bed until 6:30am the next morning.


Strawberry-Lemon Verbena Ice Cream


1 ½ cups whole milk
½ cup heavy cream
¾ cup sugar
1 pinch salt
1 cup loosely packed lemon verbena leaves
1 cup sliced strawberries


1. In a small saucepan warm 1 cup of the milk and the sugar until the sugar is dissolved. Then pour in the rest of the milk and the cream and the salt. Add the lemon verbena leaves and warm the milk until small bubbles appear around the sides of the pan. Then remove it from the heat and place a lid on it. Allow the lemon verbena to steep for about an hour or more.

2. Pour the milk mixture into a large bowl, cover it with plastic wrap and place it in the fridge for at least 3 hours.

3. Strain the milk mixture into the ice cream maker bowl, removing the lemon verbena leaves as you do. Turn on the ice cream maker and churn the ice cream according to directions. Add the sliced strawberries halfway through churning. Scoop into a freezer friendly container and freeze the ice cream for an addition 2 hours or more. Serve!


Naptime Notes

Naptime Recipe Serving ideas

This herbal ice cream is delicious served on its own or on the side of a light summer cake. It even is delicious to use in an ice cream float!

Naptime Stopwatch

15 minutes active prep time.


Naptime Reviews

My daughter enjoyed it, but wasn’t sold. My husband and I adored it!


7 Responses to “Strawberry-Lemon Verbena Ice Cream {Naptime Everyday}”

  1. Elizabeth says:

    I’ve never tried eggless ice cream, but I love how easy it seems! Also, this flavor sounds amazing–can’t wait to try.

  2. Ugh, I hope you get some relief from the early wake-ups soon.  In the meantime, this is a beautiful ice cream to add some relief to the day.

  3. Ugh, I hope you get some relief from the early wake-ups soon.  In the meantime, this is a beautiful ice cream to add some relief to the day.

  4. Georgia says:

    Lemon Verbena is my all time favorite herb, especially in ice cream. I’ll definitely be trying this!

  5. Heather says:

    Oh wow, I want some of this now!  If I had an ice cream maker, I’d be making this tonight. 

  6. Dawn Dandy says:

    I love your blog.  Love.  My little is 8 months old and I’m trying to get on track with making good food, not just fast food 🙂

  7. Aluma Wallet says:

    This strawberry-lemon verbena ice cream looks wonderful.  I think it could be a great, refreshing Summer treat.