Sweet vanilla ice cream with a tantalizing blackberry swirl tastes incredible in homemade gingersnap ice cream cones. This Blackberry Swirl Ice Cream is a perfect summer treat, and the extra effort to prepare homemade cones is definitely worth it!
School’s started, and the days are getting shorter, true, but I’m not ready to let go of summer yet. Fall officially arrived this weekend, but I’m still enjoying the sunshine and spending as much time outside as I can. And since I can’t walk by blackberry brambles without wanting to pick every fat, juicy berry I see, I’ve taken to carrying empty yogurt containers with me whenever I leave the house. The berries, they beckon, and I can’t resist. While the sun is still allowing me to pretend that summer hasn’t left the Pacific Northwest, Blackberry Swirl Ice Cream has become my favorite use for fresh berries. The ice cream — sweet vanilla with a tantalizing deep-magenta ribbon — tastes like blackberry pie a la mode in frozen form. To truly enjoy this ice cream, though, I recommend scooping it into homemade Gingersnap Ice Cream Cones.
The crisp texture and warm, spicy flavor of these gingersnap cones adds a whole new dimension to the sweet and tangy flavors mingling in the ice cream. And, as if discovering an amazing new flavor combination wasn’t enough, this project also taught me that making homemade ice cream cones perfectly complements the making of homemade ice cream. Ice cream usually requires egg yolks, but no whites. Whenever we make ice cream, I save the egg whites thinking I’ll use them later. What really happens is this: I discover them in the back of the fridge weeks later, chastise myself for being wasteful, and then dump them warily down the kitchen drain. Ice cream cones have rescued me from this sad ritual; the flat, round cookies used to make cones include egg whites. Now that I know this, it seems almost crazy not to make ice cream cones to go along with freshly churned ice cream. Making cones involves wrapping the oven-hot cookies around a conical shape; this is relatively simple to master after a bit of practice and, to be honest, a few burned fingertips.
At first I tried wrapping the cookies around a cone-shaped form from a skein of yarn, but since it wasn’t pointy on the tip, it made sealing the ends difficult (and you definitely want the ends sealed to prevent the ice cream from dripping out the bottom!). I popped a cream horn mold on the top of the form, and this did the trick.
Of course manufacturers sell waffle cone makers and cone forms, but you don’t need to spend a lot of money on special equipment to make your own ice cream cones. I’ve made them three times already with my cobbled-together form, so I should know. And now, if you’ll excuse me, the sun’s shining and the berries are calling. If I keep making ice cream, maybe summer will stick around for a while yet.