Aunt Judy’s Lemon Creme Sherbet
August 12, 2014
My aunt Judy lives in North Carolina, and my mom and I went to visit her several times through my childhood. One of the times we were there, I’m thinking when I was in junior high, she served this homemade lemon ice cream. That lemon ice cream stuck in my mind for YEARS…it was SO GOOD. Then on one of our more recent visits, she made it again, without me even suggesting it, and it was exactly as I had remembered. Creamy and tart, and so, so good. But I didn’t have an ice cream maker, so I wasn’t able to make it myself. I’ve always wanted an ice cream maker, though, with this ice cream in mind as one of the first things to make.
Well, this spring I found an ice cream maker at a thrift store…a vintage 1970’s Master Chef. And it works perfectly. I made vanilla ice cream first, just as a test run, and to serve with a chocolate cake I made. But I was dying to make the lemon ice cream. I emailed Aunt Judy for the recipe, and she sent it, along with it’s origins.
She first tasted the lemon ice cream at Maldaner’s Restaurant in Springfield, IL, when my Aunt Annie took her there when she was a teenager. Back then, they called it Lemon Creme Sherbet, and they claim it is based on a recipe from Mary Todd Lincoln. It obviously had the same influence on Judy as it did me, because she went home and tried to recreate it! She says this recipe has the same flavor and texture as the restaurant’s, as far as she can recollect. Now I kind of want to make a trip down to Springfield to check this place out, and taste the sherbet for myself!
I also thought this was really good in an old-fashioned ice cream soda! When I was a kid, whenever my dad took me to Dairy Queen, I would order an old-fashioned chocolate ice cream soda. It was my absolute favorite. They took it off the menu when I was a teenager, and I rarely see them on menus at ice cream shops. They should make a comeback, because they’re really good. My dad said that when he was a kid, there was an ice cream soda stand in Peoria, IL, that had every flavor you could imagine. I had some lemon flavored La Croix on hand, so I thought it would be fun to try a lemon ice cream soda. I’m sure it’s supposed to have lemon syrup in it as well, but to me this was perfect. Not to sweet, nice and tart and creamy, and the soda makes the best ice crystals with the ice cream. Just pour some soda water over ice cream and you’re set! Of course, I added some whipped cream, too.
Lemon Creme Sherbet
1 egg plus 1 egg yolk
1 1/3 c. sugar
4 tsp. flour
1 1/3 c. half and half
1/3 c. milk
1/8 tsp. salt
1⁄2 c. milk
1⁄2 c. lemon juice
1 1⁄2 tsp. grated lemon rind
Beat egg and yolk in medium bowl until fluffy. Set aside. Mix next five ingredients in heavy saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring constantly till mixture thickens (10 – 15 min).
Slowly add small amount of hot mixture to eggs whisking thoroughly. Return this mixture to pan. Cook and stir 1 additional minute. Chill.
Add remaining milk and lemon juice. Mixture will be curdly. Process in ice cream maker, folding in lemon rind just before packing to freeze.