Green Tea Ice Cream

This post was originally intended for March because of the focus on green, but alas, things got away from me this past week…

I have had the pleasure of a cup of green tea more than a dozen times, so I think I have some idea of the different blends of green tea that exist.  I even attended a traditional green tea ceremony in Japan!

Many green teas and green tea ice creams are made with Matcha powder.  The powder tends to give the ice cream a distinctive green color and an almost chalky taste, at least to me.  Since I have been experimenting with brewed teas to make homemade ice cream (sans an ice cream maker), I thought I would buck the trend, and go with a store-bought tea blend.

If you’d like to check out the other delicious flavors of homemade, tea-based ice creams that I’ve made on this blog, please click on the following links:  Orange Tea Ice Cream with Mandarin Puree and Cloves or Earl Grey Tea Ice Cream with Cardamom.  I’ve also made several other non-tea ice creams that can be found on the Old Posts tab.

I am open to suggestions if any of you readers have a favorite tea flavor that you’d like to see me make into an ice cream!  Please let me know in the comments section below.

And now, the green tea ice cream…

Green Tea Ice Cream
Serves 6.  This recipe is adapted from a recipe for “Mango Ice Cream” from The Essential Asian Cookbook.  Please visit my Resources page for information on the original publication.

  1/2 cup caster sugar (see Method)
  about 1 prepared cup of a green tea blend made with boiling water and steeped for 10 minutes, or to taste

(Steep the tea long enough to develop a full flavor, but stop before it gets bitter.  I found that this tea needed to steep for a longer period of time so that the green tea flavor would come through in the final ice cream.  For this cup of tea, I used a bagged tea variety called Premium Green Tea by The Stash Tea Company.)

  splash of vanilla
  1 cup heavy whipping cream

food processor
electric mixer
large plastic food storage container with cover

Prepare the green tea as directed above and allow the steamy cup of tea to cool while making caster sugar.

Here is the tea bag wrapper... I really like the flavor of this brand of green tea.

I broke open one of the tea bags to show an up-close shot of the tea leaves.

If needed, use the food processor to blend ½ cup of white granulated sugar into caster sugar, a superfine version of sugar.  Blend for a few minutes until you have a very fine, dusty consistency.  Beware of the sugar dust cloud when you open the food processor!  If you prefer, caster sugar can be purchased at the store where it retails as superfine sugar.

Next, combine the caster sugar and the cup of cooled, brewed tea in a large bowl.  I like to use a stainless-steel mixing bowl.

This is a little bit of the cooled tea in the cup. You can see the green color.

Mix well, until the sugar completely dissolves into the green tea.

This is the green tea ice cream base -- the cooled green tea and caster sugar.

Using an electric mixer, beat 1 cup of heavy whipping cream until stiff peaks form.  Add in a splash of vanilla during the whipping process.  Then, very gently, fold the whipped cream into the green tea base.

Pour the green tea ice cream into a large plastic food storage container with a cover.  The mixture will be a bit soupy because of all the liquid.  Don’t worry if there are still little bits of whipped cream, they will be blended smooth after the first freezing.

This is the green tea ice cream all ready to be frozen.

Freeze the green tea ice cream for 1½ to 2 hours, or until the ice cream is half-frozen.

Remove the ice cream from the freezer and carefully break it up into large pieces with a spoon.  Process the ice cream chunks in the food processor until the ice cream is smooth, about 1 minute.  If you feel tempted to taste the blended ice cream, you should know that the green tea flavor and color are a little weak at this point — they will be more pronounced after the final steps.

Transfer the ice cream back to the plastic container and allow the mixture to freeze completely.  (I have always left it in the freezer overnight.)

This is the blended ice cream, freezing away...

When you are ready to serve the ice cream, allow it to thaw for several minutes at room temperature before scooping it out into serving dishes.

Allow the ice cream to thaw properly, or your scoops will look like this ... isn't the greenish-yellow hue pretty?

I love how refreshing all these homemade ice creams taste!

No chalky taste here! Just cream, and the subtle-tea of a great green tea!

◊◊  Cooking Note:  This ice cream does not have preservatives of any kind, so it tastes best if enjoyed within a day or two of preparation.