So, I recently became in possession of 1kg of poppyseeds.
From Moore Wilson‘s grocery store of course, and while they’re not all-bulk, I guess they’ve seen enough people come and go to only stock their poppyseeds writ large and behind the counter. Ask for them by name. I only wanted some to make the dressing for this bean salad, and assumed rakishly that I could use up the rest with ease. But, like some cruel, curve-of-the-earth perspective trick, whenever I walked towards the bag it seemed to grow bigger and bigger, poppyseeds regenerating themselves when removed by the incremental spoonful.
Actually it’s not as dramatic as that. There is in fact…no drama. The bag of poppyseeds can sit pretty much forever on the shelf waiting to be used. It’s just that their plentiful existence has caused me to consider them pretty closely, and what I could do with at least some of them.
Unfortunately a perfunctory search of recipes didn’t serve up anything too inspiring. And then I wondered, as I always wonder, if they’d make a decent ice cream, especially since I had some lemons lurking round that Tim’s mum had given us. Should I do a custard based ice cream? A semifreddo thing? That would’ve meant buying ingredients, and we’re trying to save money by using up things we have in the cupboard. What I did have however, as always, was canned coconut milk. And so…that’s all I used. I didn’t even make a coconut milk custard, like I do for my Chocolate Ice Cream recipe. I guess it’s a slight stretch to call this ice cream now, but it’s a stretch I’m going to make. It sets so solid that all you can do is cut it with a knife like that’s what you meant to do in the first place, and it’s truly delicious.
I still have a little Cocoa Sorbet left in the freezer but decided that two ice creams on the hop would be practical. I can’t remember how I justified it, I think it was something like “I love ice cream!”
Lemon Poppyseed Ice Cream
2 x 400ml cans plain, full-fat coconut milk
1/2 cup sugar
Juice and zest of 2-3 lemons (depending on the juiciness)
3 tablespoons poppyseeds
In a large pan, gently heat the coconut milk and sugar, stirring, till the sugar has dissolved. Continue to gently heat and stir for another five minutes then remove from the heat and allow to cool a bit.
Stir in the lemon juice and zest, and pour the mixture into a loaf tin (depending on how much lemon juice you used and the size of your loaf tin there may be a bit too much mixture) Carefully – don’t spill it like I did – place in the freezer. Allow to partially freeze, then stir it briskly with a fork or small whisk, then stir in the poppyseeds (at this stage, so they don’t all sink to the bottom) and return it to the freezer. To serve, cut thick slices.
I love this ice cream. Firstly it’s so easy to make. Just stir and pour. It has a popsicle-fresh, clean sweet lemony goodness, a thick and icy but still pleasing texture, and the nuttishly flavoursome poppyseeds delivered lovingly to your mouth in each spoonful. The coconut flavour isn’t overly pronounced, but whatever you do recognise will only be enhanced by the other ingredients. And if you have poppyseeds around already, and you’re lucky enough to either have a lemon tree or a lemon benefactor, then it’s a very, very inexpensive recipe. You could always leave the poppyseeds out and use a mix of lemon and orange juice and zest. Toasted coconut stirred through instead of the poppyseeds might work too. Play round and see what you like, although I do recommend first just trying this recipe itself – the summery, zingy lemon with the poppyseeds is pretty lovely.
My poppyseed adventuring didn’t end there, as, deciding on ‘both’ instead of ‘which’, I also made a lemon poppyseed cake (using this recipe here). Was it overkill? Most definitely not.
The very opposite of the ice cream, this cake is soft, buttery, and lush, the lemon flavour absorbed into the golden grit of the polenta and almonds to produce something wildly good. Pictured here is, sadly, the last piece.
Tim and I had an amazing night at Aloe Blacc’s concert on Thursday – he was an absolute diamond performer with a stupefyingly lovely voice and hugely comfortable stage presence. We took some photos, which you can see here and here. Tonight we’re going to the Wellington Laneway show which should be fun as, and if you’re in Wellington and want tickets they’re available for purchase here.
In our travel plan developments…we bought tickets to see Wicked in London! It sorta feels like the only appropriate response is a youthful OMG.
Title via: the song of the same name from the late Jonathan Larson’s musical 30/90, which I was able to see performed by a local theatre group a couple of years ago. It was fairly thrilling then, so one can only speculate what the Lear Jet-voiced Raul Esparza would have been like in the lead role in his day.
Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti, Round and Round from Before Today, strangely alluring with its “na na naaah” opening deceptively evoking the sort of music that plays when you’re put on hold on the phone, swirling into something uplifting and exciting and…swirly. He’ll be at Laneway too, so.
Sadly not at Laneway or anywhere near my line of vision, is Idina Menzel, whose album I Stand – which still feels recent-ish – became three years old the other day. You go, Idina. While her debut Still I Can’t Be Still remains a flawless highpoint for me, I Stand is fantastic and I hope she continues to write music. And that I actually see her sing one day for real.
Next time: I made some gingerbread cut-out cookies but it has been heavy on the sweet things lately so I might instead do the pasta I made tonight with a raw tomato sauce. Either way: delicious.