Lilac Ice Cream
This creamy and rich lilac ice cream is extremely seasonal, flavorful, and bursting with gorgeous lilac and brown sugar flavor that will become your favorite treat during the short and cherished lilac blooming season.
Are lilacs edible?
Lilacs are totally edible, part of the olive family. And we have some favorite ways to enjoy them. If you have the opportunity, spend a very beautiful day hand-plucking each individual flower off their stem and soak them in a bath of cream to let the flowers infuse into a floral milk for the cake and buttercream. The precious liquid can then be turned into creamy and dreamy lattes, buttercreams and lilac ice cream. Or infused into a floral sugar, like lilac brown sugar. Or preserved in a raw local honey, like in this lilac honey recipe.
Identifying and harvesting lilac:
Lilac has glossy, heart-shaped leaves, smooth bark. It displays spikes of densely packed, small, pale flowers that have a sweet smell. (Source) You want to be using lilacs grown organically. Read my post on the best edible flowers to grow in your garden. If it's grown on your property and hasn't been sprayed with pesticides, it's safe to use. Avoid lilac that you're uncertain about, or purchased from the grocery store. Read all about Where to buy or find edible flowers for cookies and cakes to learn about best practices for sourcing flowers you'll use in food.
How to source lilac:
You want to be using lilacs grown organically. Read my post on the best edible flowers to grow in your garden. If it's grown on your property and hasn't been sprayed with pesticides, it's safe to use. Avoid lilac that you're uncertain about, or purchased from the grocery store. Read all about Where to buy or find edible flowers for cookies and cakes to learn about best practices for sourcing flowers you'll use in food.
Expert tips for making ice cream at home:
The key step in making perfect ice cream at home is to slowly mix and simmer the ingredients for twenty minutes, allowing the ice cream to and then letting the mixture cool completely. Do not overheat or cook any longer than this. You do not want to cook your eggs, just thicken the mixture for the right consistency.
Lastly, you will want to completely chill to mixture before churning the ice cream. I always allow my mixture to cool in the refrigerator for two - 24 hours. Overnight is recommended, but not necessary.
- 1 cups heavy cream
- 2 cup whole milk
- ¼ cup of freshly picked, clean lilac flowers
- 4 egg yolks
- ¾ cup honey or brown sugar sugar
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 tablespoon vanilla extract
How to make it:
- Add all ingredients to a small sauce pan.
- On low heat, mix consistently, and slowly simmer and mix for twenty minutes.
- If desired, sieve ingredients into a heat proof container. I personally leave my lilac flowers in. I'm a textured ice cream kind of person, the more stuff, the better. You do you.
- Let mixture cool for at least two hours.
- Mix cooled custard and add to to ice cream maker and churn according to manufactuer's recommendations. Ours churns for twenty minutes. Ice cream should double in volume and be solid, but soft when done.
Recommendations for serving this ice cream:
- In vintage bowls or adorable mini buckets
- Drizzled with warm lilac infused honey or rose infused honey
- With freshly baked lilac shortbread cookie crumbles
- In homemade waffle cones
- With candied lilac flowers
- Alongside fresh spring lilac cake
- Alongside lavender pancakes