Pistachio Olive Oil Ice Cream

May 20, 2022
0 Ratings
Photo by Bobbi Lin
  • Prep time 36 hours
  • makes About 5 cups
Author Notes

As with mint, many pistachio ice creams go to great lengths to appear as green as the Grinch. But why? The nut’s natural hue is lovely in its own right. In earlier rounds, I toasted the pistachios to amplify their intensity. Or so I thought. Many pints later, it became clear that the most intense flavor—and color—comes from raw, shelled nuts. Which, lucky us, is even easier to prepare. Instead of literal food coloring, this recipe turns to another colorful food: extra-virgin olive oil. Its grassy glow enriches the ice cream, yielding an especially silky scoop. And speaking of silky: Many no-churn ice creams include a splash of vodka or bourbon, thanks to alcohol’s low freezing point. This one does, too, just with an extra step: combining vodka with chopped pistachios, and letting that sit for one to two days. This means we’re improving the texture and flavor of our ice cream at the same time. Look at us! You’ll have a little leftover extract; keep it in the fridge and use it anywhere a recipe calls for almond extract, like this scone loaf. If you want to gild the lily, you can top this with chopped pistachios or more olive oil or, even better, both. —Emma Laperruque

What You'll Need
  • Pistachio Ice Cream
  • 1 1/3 cups (160 grams) raw shelled pistachios
  • 1 (14-ounce/396-gram) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 tablespoon pistachio extract (see below)
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup (50 grams) extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups (454 grams) heavy cream, cold
  • Pistachio Extract
  • 1/4 cup (50 grams) vodka
  • 2 tablespoons (15 grams) raw shelled pistachios, roughly chopped
  1. Pistachio Ice Cream
  2. Stick a loaf pan or a couple containers in the freezer.
  3. In a (preferably high-powered) blender or food processor, blitz the pistachios until they are very finely ground, almost becoming butter in certain spots.
  4. Add the condensed milk, pistachio extract, and salt. Blend, scraping down as needed, until the mixture is as smooth and homogeneous as possible. While blending, slowly stream in the olive oil. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl.
  5. Rinse out the blender with cold water. If the machine is warm, wait until it cools down. Add the cream to the blender and blend until you have whipped cream with stiff, smooth peaks (keep a close eye so it doesn’t turn into butter).
  6. Dollop by dollop, gently fold the whipped cream into the pistachio mixture. Scrape into the frozen container(s), cover, and freeze until scoopable, at least 8 hours, depending on your freezer. This is best fresh, but it will keep for up to 1 week.
  1. Pistachio Extract
  2. Combine the vodka and chopped pistachios in a jar. Cover and let infuse at room temperature for 1 to 2 days. Strain and discard the pistachios.

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Emma was the food editor at Food52. She created the award-winning column, Big Little Recipes, and turned it into a cookbook in 2021. These days, she's a senior editor at Bon Appétit, leading digital cooking coverage. Say hello on Instagram at @emmalaperruque.

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