We're just starting to see the first local strawberries show up in our local stores and while they're not yet the fully ripe juicy ones we'll get in another couple months, they're wonderful all the same after months on not seeing them. Since I try to create a new ice cream recipe almost every week and I'm trying to make ice creams that incorporate at least some honey to cut back on processed sugar (not that I'm trying to pretend this is a healthy dessert with all the cream!), I thought this would be a great opportunity to make an ice cream that hinted of the spring to come. I put a cup of chopped strawberries that I later pureed in the ice cream and then topped it with more strawberries, but you could double or even triple the strawberry puree to bring out more strawberry in the ice cream, but be careful not to lose the wonderful honey-mascarpone flavor. Unfortunately we all ate it so fast, my picture is of the bit and pieces of ice cream we had left over in the container! —TheWimpyVegetarian
Place the strawberries in a bowl and sprinkle the sugar over them. Set aside.
Combine the first 5 ingredients (through the vanilla extract) together with a hand mixer or fork. Set aside.
Heat up the milk and whipping cream over medium heat until it starts to simmer around the edges. Just before it goes into a full simmer, remove from the heat and let cool. If the cream is too hot, the honey may curdle.
Once it's cooled to lukewarm, add the honey and salt. Stir until the honey is completely absorbed into the cream.Stir in the mascarpone cheese mixture until it is completely dissolved into the honey-cream mixture.
By now the strawberries will have softened with the sugar. Process them into a liquid with a food processor and strain into the ice cream base to remove the seeds. This will be enough to provide a hint of strawberry. If you prefer a stronger strawberry flavor, puree 2 cups of sliced strawberries and double the sugar you sprinkle on top of them.
Chill the mixture for at least 4 hours, ideally overnight. Process in an ice cream maker according to manufacturers directions. If the ice cream is softer than you prefer, harden in the freezer for a short time before serving.
I served this with chopped strawberries on top which was a perfect way to bring out more strawberry flavor without inhibiting the wonderful honey-mascarpone flavor.