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Ruth Smith's Peach Ice Cream, the original recipe


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Ruth Smith's Peach Ice Cream, the original recipe

Every summer holiday, and many summer weekends when the peaches or nectarines were in season, Dad would haul out the hand-crank ice cream maker and Mom would go to work peeling peaches and pureeing them. In later years the family flew the coop, our diets and schedules changed, and eventually, the wooden bucket dried up and sprang a leak. Mom and Dad got an electric ice cream maker and adapted the recipe for a smaller batch. I'm still working on the small-batch adaptation.

This recipe makes at least 1-1/2 quarts ice cream. I say "at least" because that's what my old notes say; however, I note that my full-sized ice cream maker is closer to 3 quarts, and this recipe fits the ice cream maker.

This is a very forgiving recipe. It works for peaches, nectarines, plums, or a blend of them; I'd guess it works with other stone fruits like apricot, but I've never tried to make sure. It works with or without nuts. I write it with eggs, because that's how we did it growing up, but Mama has dropped the eggs, and the ice cream is fine without them. Mama peels her peaches; I'd peel peaches because of the fuzz, but I don't bother peeling nectarines, and the peel bits make for interesting flecks and deeper color. Finally, the type of dairy product can change with your dietary preferences. Whole milk works; half-and-half makes it creamier; cream makes it creamier still; 2% milk still makes a darned good product.

The one thing you really must do, to make this ice cream come out right, is use the best, most flavorful, ripe fruit you can possibly get.

To the best of our knowledge, this is Mom's original recipe. I write it here with her consent.

Oh yes, and I should add, the photo with this is of a plum-nectarine ice cream, one of the variations.

  • 10 peaches, peeled and cut into chunks; crammed into a blender. You need 2 blenders' worth for this size recipe.
  • 1 lemon, cut in half, to be juiced
  • 3 eggs
  • 2-1/2 c sugar
  • 1/2 c milk, cream, half-and-half as you choose

Step 1: Prep and puree the fruit

You can peel the fruit, or not, as you prefer.

Cut the fruit into chunks and stuff it - I mean, really cram it - into a blender jar. Add the juice of 1/2 lemon.

Puree that batch. Do this step again, so you have 2 blender jars' worth of pureed fruit with the juice of 1/2 lemon in with it. This comes out to slightly under 2 quarts of fruit puree.

Step 2: Prepare the egg and sugar mixture

Beat 3 or 4 eggs, depending on how decadent you want to be, until they're light. Add sugar gradually until the mixture thickens. You'll end up with about 3-1/2 c. egg and sugar batter. (Note: the eggs appear to be optional. I still add them, but Mom doesn't, and she doesn't miss them. If you're nervous about salmonella, use pasteurized eggs. If you don't want eggs, don't use them at all.)

Step 3: Load into ice cream machine

Dump the peach puree and egg/sugar mixture into the ice cream bucket. Add milk (half-and-half, cream, whatever) until the bucket is slightly over 2/3 full, i.e. until you're up to the fill line for your bucket. The amount of milk or cream needed will depend on how full you crammed those blender jars and how well you fluffed the eggs. Normally it's less than a pint of milk.

Step 4: Add the ice and rock salt

If you're using an ice and salt mixture instead of a frozen canister, you must use a ratio of 4 parts ice to 1 part salt, i.e. 1 quart ice to 1 cup rock salt. Too much or too little salt, and you won't get proper freezing.

Note: it's important to use rock salt or ice cream salt. Some rock salt has dark insoluble compounds that make a mess in the sink later, so I've taken to using ice cream salt, specifically.


Add toasted nuts - for instance, toasted slivered almonds with plum ice cream are a wonderful combination. If your ice cream machine allows you to add nuts after you've started churning, then wait until the ice cream is starting to freeze and stiffen, so the nuts will be evenly disperse through the ice cream.

Mix the fruits - plum and nectarine go beautifully together.

Keywords: Dessert, American, Easy, Ice Cream Maker, Fruit, Blender, Ice Cream

( RG1327 )

Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

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"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)
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