Kitchen Bitchin' for Fig Ice Cream

Monday, August 13, 2007

If David Lebovitz will have me, I would like to be his kitchen bitch. I can clean the oven, dice fresh produce, and clean dishes all while wearing a skimpy little outfit even. That's how much I seriously love his ice cream book.

The fig ice cream has been thus far my absolute favorite ice cream in the book. Not that the rice pudding gelato, cheesecake ice cream, or endless sorbets haven't been absolutely fantastic. But this one is just *UNH!* It's the bee's knees. Pure ecstatic pleasure; like driving down a bumpy old dirt road in a car with bad shocks. (I bet I get an angry e-mail about this post...)

This ice cream is great with some honey and pairs harmoniously as a side to a cheese plate; we had a bit of manchego on the side for us. It's insanely sweet, but really extols the heady nature of figs. The figs have come into full season at the farmer's market, so be sure to head down, pick some up and make this ice cream.Fresh Fig Ice Cream
From David Lebovitz's The Perfect Scoop

2 lbs fresh figs (about 20)
1/2 cup of water 1 lemon, preferably unsprayed
3/4 cup of sugar

1 cup of heavy cream

1/2 teaspoon of freshly squeezed, lemon juice, or more to taste

Remove the hard stem ends from the figs, then cut each fig into 8 pieces. Put the figs in a
medium, nonreactive suacepan with the water, and zest the lemon directly into the saucepan. Cover and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for about 8-1o minutes until the figs are tender.

Remove the lid, add the sugar and continue to cook until it reaches a jam-like consistency. Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature. Blend together with cream and lemon juice, chill in the fridge and then put in your ice cream maker per the manufacturer's instructions.


  1. Yum! Looks so very delicious.

    Conveniently I just bought a basket of figs... :)

  2. Oof! I wanna lick that off the screen! Gosh, I wish fresh figs were easily available here. In the meantime, I will dream about this ice cream.

  3. I'm a lurker, and love the ice cream stuff you've been doing. I want to experiment, but have gotten stuck on which ice cream maker to buy. Are you using one of the $500 super duper machines, or something more affordable? Thanks!

  4. Jenn S. - I use a $30 dollar machine made by kitchenaid and it is fantastic. :)

  5. I need to buy that cookbook! I love making ice cream and don't do it often enough. Thanks!

  6. Garrett,
    I, too, am a NorCal. Like your other fans, I enjoy your writing and am impressed by your cooking but, what I'm REALLY impressed with is your photography. Your "models" always look quite scrumptious. On that note, I have recently rediscovered figs and can't wait to try this ice cream.
    I have a cheezy old ice cream machine that whines until you just don't think you can STAND another second stops cold. COLD! Get it?! Stops cold....sorry.

  7. Debbie - Boo to the bad joke.

    I am surprised people like the pics on this site, compared to many others like La Tartine Gourmand, or 101 Cookbooks, mine are putzy at best. But thanks, I do appreciate it, and it give me motivation to keep trying to make the pictures better each time. :)

    On the bad joke note - What does a robot taste with?

    His tungsten! Get it?! ;)

  8. Followed you here from your comment at Figs Olives Wine (one of my favorite stops), and I have to say, think a lot of us feel as you do about being David's kitchen bitch. Knowledge, recipes, experience, sure, but the samples alone would be worth it. Goodness he makes good stuff.

    As for this recipe, figs are absolutely one of the best things in the whole world, and ice cream is another. So, yum. And I like your photos too :)

  9. Garrett: I accept!

    In fact, I've got a sinkful of dishes right now, and...well,'s been a while since I (or sadly, anyone else) has got down on his hands-and-knees...and, um, given my oven a good scrubbing.

    But you might want to dress in something with a bit more coverage; it's cold here!

    Leather chaps might work...


  10. David - Sweeeeeeet. Sadly, no leather chaps though, mine was destroyed by the cleaners. Will a gogo thong work? ;)

  11. Looks wonderful Garrett, I love figs fresh or dried.

  12. Y'all are too funny! I absolutely adore The Perfect Scoop and have made more batches of ice cream from it than I can count. Yours looks yummy delish!

  13. Sorry Cenk, I totally called it first. I have written proof on the blog. ;)

  14. I know it's a zillion weeks later, but I'd like to thank you for posting this delicious recipe. Figs only just arrived at the stores in my area. I'll be trying this as soon as I get a few pints!

    A good friend of mine owns several of David's cookbooks. She's given me recipes out of it in the past (I've tried the apricot ice cream with sour cherry sauce), and they've all been absolutely wonderful.

  15. Hi, Bri here from
    As you can tell, by my blog name, I LOVE figs. What a great ice cream idea. I will have to make this. On your tastespotting description, I thought the fig ice cream had vanilla and garlic in it, so I wasn't going to click on it, but decided to anyway. Sure glad I did. I'll link to your post when I make. Thanks for the recipe! I love the manchego on the side suggestion too.

  16. This just confirms the fact that I need this book... I would gladly become his kitchen bitch as well, it doesn't hurt that he's living in Paris.

  17. Ooh, found this from a link on David's website, and I made it last night. Soo delicious and ridiculously creamy. I'll have to "visit" more often and get a feel for the cuisine in Sacramento. My boyfriend and I are moving to that area next summer.

  18. Made this last night because we had a blessing of a fig crop abundance. To say it is mind-blowingly yummy is hardly to do it justice--just gotta try it. AND, if you taste the fruit compote that you create in the first part of the recipe--where you cook the figs with sugar--it stands to reason that that's something worthy of enjoy too--on toast, pancakes, etc. Happy figgy love.

  19. That's it? It's that easy? No cooking custard or anything? I think I love you for posting this! I am up to my knees in fresh figs and need recipes that use a lot of them--I need to make this tomorrow! Thank you!

  20. Have you ever tried substituting the sugar with honey? I am wondering if it will upset the consistency of the ice cream...

  21. Annon- I have not. I suggest trying it yourself and letting us all know your results. =)

  22. I'm making a vegan version of this right now by subbing the cream with coconut milk. I can't wait, I'm sure it will be delicious. I love your blog, thanks for all the inspiration.

  23. I made this - veganized with soy creamer. It was great, thanks for posting the recipe!


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