Brown bread ice-cream

Serves: 6
Course: Dessert
Cooking Time: 0 hr 30 mins
  • Brown soda bread:
  • 200g coarse wholemeal flour
  • 200g plain flour
  • 1tsp bread soda, sieved
  • 1tsp salt
  • 325ml buttermilk
  • Ice-cream:
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 100g caster sugar
  • ½ a vanilla pod, seeds
  • 300ml cream
  • 100ml milk
  • 100g brown bread (preferably crusty end slices)
  • 30g dark muscovado sugar, for caramelised breadcrumbs
  • 1-2tsp water

1 For the brown soda bread, preheat an oven to 210 degrees Celsius fan, or equivalent, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large bowl, mix together the wholemeal flour, plain flour, bread soda and salt. Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and pour in the buttermilk, stirring with four to five turns of a spatula to a soft, sticky dough.

2 Turn the dough out onto a well-floured work surface. With well-floured hands, roll the dough around gently to tidy it up, then turn it over and shape it into a patty. Transfer to the lined baking sheet, score a deep cross over the surface and bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes until risen and golden in colour. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

3 For the caramelised breadcrumbs, blitz bread and sugar to fine crumbs, stir in a little water to moisten. Line a baking tray with parchment paper and spread the crumbs on the centre of the tray.

4 Bake in an oven preheated to 200 degrees Celsius fan, or equivalent for 10 minutes, until crispened but not burnt, and set aside to cool.

5 For the ice-cream, whisk the egg yolks and sugar together until the mixture is thick and leaves a ribbon-like trail.

6 Bring the cream and milk to a simmer in a saucepan with the scraped seeds from the vanilla pod. First, whisk a third of the scalded cream mixture into the eggs and caster sugar, then continue whisking in the remaining hot cream. Return to the cleaned saucepan, and stir over a gentle heat for approximately 10 minutes until the mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon.

7 Transfer the mixture to a clean bowl to cool. When it is cool, transfer to the freezer and stir the ice-cream every hour for four hours until just set (and no longer slushy in the middle). Once set, stir in at least half the toasted sweetened breadcrumbs and refreeze.

8 When serving, sprinkle the remaining caramelised breadcrumbs over the ice-cream.


Different flavours such as fruit compote, rum and raisin and praline can be added to this basic vanilla ice-cream recipe.