*FYI cutting the tomatoes into 1-inch chunks is meant only to help get the right cup measurement regardless of the size of your tomatoes. If you weigh the tomatoes instead, all you have to do is cut them into a few rough pieces as you add them to the processor. Just one more reason to use a scale!
You will also need the following for this recipe:
Instant read thermometer
Medium fine strainer
Food processor fitted with the steel blade
And ice pop mold with multiple cavities, or individual cups or containers
Ice cream sticks
To make the ice cream base:
Set the strainer over a 6- to 8-cup bowl and set it aside for the finished ice cream base. Find a larger bowl for an ice bath and locate ice cubes in the freezer.
Put the sugar, milk powder, salt, golden syrup, egg, and 1/4 cup of the milk in a 2- to 3-quart saucepan. Whisk until thoroughly blended. Whisk in the remaining milk and the cream (but NOT the sour cream).
Retire the whisk and continue with a heatproof silicon spatula.
Cook the mixture over medium-low heat, stirring with the spatula, and sweeping the bottom, corners, and sides of the pan constantly to avoid scorching, until the mixture registers 178 to 180° F on an instant read thermometer. Immediately scrape the mixture into the strainer set over the bowl. Stir in the vanilla extract. Set the bowl in the larger bowl and add water and ice to the larger bowl. Set the whole business in the fridge until the base is cold. Remove the bowl from the ice bath, whisk in the sour cream, and cover airtight. Refrigerate several hours, preferably overnight.
To make the sorbet base:
Puree the tomatoes in the food processor. The mixture will be soupy.
Transfer a generous 1/2 cup of the puree to a saucepan or small skillet. Cook over medium heat, scraping the pan constantly with a silicon spatula to avoid scorching the mixture, until it is reduced and thickened to the consistency of ketchup. Scrape the cooked puree into the processor and pulse to blend. (Anyone who objects to nice textural bits of tomato skin and seeds in the finished sorbet should press the mixture through a medium-fine sieve now, or forever hold your peace).
Taste and add drops of lime or lemon juice to taste and then the tiniest pinch or so of salt. Citrus and salt are just to wake up the tomato flavor, not to make it salty or citrusy. Correct the sugar, too, if necessary, since your tomatoes might not be the same as mine. If you like, grate the zest of half of the orange over the mixture and stir it in. Refrigerate until needed.
Twenty minutes before freezing the ice cream, set the ice cream base in the freezer for an extra-cold start. (If your machine is electric, turn it on to pre-chill for 5 minutes before adding the ice cream base.) Churn according to the instruction with your machine. When the ice cream is ready, you can either work very quickly to fill the molds before the cream melts, or transfer the ice cream to the freezer for 30 minutes so it’s a bit more stable to handle before you start filling your molds.
To fill the molds, whisk the tomato mixture (in case it has separated). Starting with the tomato mixture, either alternate several layers of tomato and ice cream or just make two thick layers. Either way, the tomato mixture will ooze up around the spoonfuls of ice cream to make gorgeously variegated Creamsicles. Leave about 1/8 inch at the top of the molds so that the lid will not be hard to remove later. If your mold has a cover with openings for sticks, put it in place and insert sticks. Otherwise, freeze until the mixture is thick enough to hold a stick upright and then insert sticks. Scrape leftover ice cream and tomato into a container. Freeze several hours until hard.
To unmold the pops, cut wax paper pieces large enough to wrap pops individually and spread them on the counter (or a tray). Fill a container with warm (not hot!) water deep enough to dip the full height of your molds. Dip the mold long enough to release a pop when you pull hard on the stick. Pull each pop quickly from the mold and set it on a piece of wax paper. Wrap the pops and put them in a resealable plastic freezer bag. Keep frozen until serving.
My career was sparked by a single bite of a chocolate truffle, made by my Paris landlady in 1972. I returned home to open this country’s first chocolate bakery and dessert shop, Cocolat, and I am often “blamed” for introducing chocolate truffles to America. Today I am the James Beard Foundation and IACP award-winning author of ten cookbooks, teach a chocolate dessert class on Craftsy.com, and work with some of the world’s best chocolate companies. In 2018, I won the IACP Award for Best Food-Focused Column (this one!).