No matter how much I try to plan what goes on this blog I go completely off the plan when I see a recipe I just have to make and share. This Pistachio Labneh Ice Cream is one of them. It also gave me a reason to finally style a photo with the gold teaspoons I got in Dubai last month. Word of advice though, don’t check the exchange rate after you buy something. Or actually rather do that because by that time it is too late to change your mind.
I love Pistachios and feel that they are the exotic queen of all nuts. The colour, the taste and pretty much the price too. There are a few pistachio recipes on the blog, a Pistachio Orange Cake, Pistachio Dukkah and two recipes right in the beginning, Quick Apple Tartlets with Pistachio Praline and Pistachio and Dark Chocolate Cantuccini, all recipes I can highly recommend. So an ice cream makes perfect sense to add to the range of recipes.
I came across the recipe on Babushka Table, a blog all the way from Istanbul. I love labneh and thought it make such a delicious ice cream. And I was right. The ice cream has a bit of a tang to it coming from the labneh which counteracts the sweetness and provides a luxurious base for the flavour of the nuts. As you do not have to make a egg custard so it is a breeze to make. I do think that too much sugar kills the overall taste of a dish so kept the sugar to a minimum but feel free to taste and add more sugar if you want. The colour is a pale green compared to the stuff you buy and I do love that you can still feel the texture of the pistachios when you eat the ice cream.
Labneh is also more commercially available and I have a recipe here for how to make labneh with some divine flavouring options. You have to plan ahead as the yoghurt needs at least 12 hours to strain and I did omit the salt when making the labneh as the pistachios were roasted and salted. You can’t take any short cuts, you want the labneh to be as creamy as possible to ensure the creamiest ice cream. One kg of plain yoghurt yielded about 600g labneh after 24 hours which is what this recipe is based on.
If you use unsalted nuts then add the pinch of salt when making the labneh as salt always increase flavour in sweet dishes.
I used my ice cream maker to make the ice cream. If you do not have one, the original recipe on Babuska Table has a method of how she made it in her food processor – well worth checking out.
- 120g pistachios
- 600g labneh (made from 1kg full fat plain yoghurt)
- 100g sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 50g pistachios, roughly chopped
- Place the 120g pistachios in a food processor and blitz until it forms a smooth paste.
- If it does not form a paste add a few drops olive oil while the processor is running to form a crumbly paste.
- Add the labneh, sugar and vanilla and pulse a few more times to mix well.
- Churn the mix in your ice cream machine as per the manufacter instructions.
- As soon as it has churned, mix in the roughly chopped pistachios.
- Spoon in a suitable container and freeze.
- Makes about 1 litre
Adapted from Babushka Table