Macerated strawberries with strawberry and balsamic ripple ice cream

Macerated strawberriesIngredients (serves 8)

Red wine and thyme syrup

  • 500ml red wine
  • 200g granulated sugar
  • 10g thyme sprigs
  • 500g strawberries, hulled and halved

Balsamic syrup

  • 475ml balsamic vinegar
  • 4tbsp granulated sugar

Strawberry and balsamic ripple ice cream

  • 70g caster sugar
  • 500g strawberries, hulled and halved
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 2tbsp strawberry liqueur
  • 100ml double cream

Method

Red wine and thyme syrup

  1. Place sugar and 125ml of red wine in a heavy based pan on a high heat. Boil until the mixture reaches a light caramel consistency (140°-150°), then add the remaining red wine and thyme; bring back to the boil again and reduce by one third.
  2. When reduced, leave to cool for five minutes before pouring over the prepared strawberries.
  3. Leave the strawberries to macerate for one hour before serving – do not leave any longer than this as the colour of the strawberries will deteriorate. Left over syrup can be reused.

Balsamic syrup

  1. Put the balsamic vinegar and sugar in a heavy based pan and place over a moderate heat; bring to a simmer and reduce by two thirds, until thick and syrupy.
  2. Leave to cool before transferring to a squeezy bottle.

Strawberry and balsamic ripple ice cream

  1. Place the strawberries, sugar, lemon juice and liqueur into a food processor and blend until smooth; pass the puree through a fine sieve and mix with the double cream. Place in an ice cream machine and churn.
  2. When Ice cream is reaching freezing point, squeeze a little of the balsamic syrup while still churning to create a ripple effect (retain the rest for dressing salads and garnishing). When satisfied with ripples, immediately transfer the rippled ice cream to a plastic container with a sealable lid and place in freezer until required.
  3. Take out of the freezer 10 minutes before serving.

To serve, spoon the macerated strawberries into a glass dish with a ball of the strawberry and balsamic ice cream on top and finish with a tuile or sweet biscuit, white chocolate shavings and a sprig of thyme.