- 5 free-range eggs, separated
- 200g (7oz) caster sugar
- 1½tsp vanilla extract
- 700ml (1¼pt) double cream
- for the plums
- 15 plums, halved and stoned
- 25g (1oz) butter, cut into small cubes
- 1½tsp cinnamon
- generous drizzle honey
- 1 vanilla pod, split
- you will need
- 1.5-litre (2¾pt) loaf tin, lined with clingfilm
To make the ice cream, in a large bowl, whisk the egg yolks with the sugar and vanilla until pale and thick. In another bowl, mix the cream until soft peaks form. In a third bowl, whisk the egg whites until very stiff.
Fold the whipped cream into the egg yolks, then the egg whites into that mixture. Pour into the prepared container and freeze overnight.
For the plums, heat the oven to 180C, 160C fan, 350F, gas 4. Place the plums in a medium-sized ovenproof dish with a cube of butter in each half, sprinkle on the cinnamon, drizzle over the honey and add the vanilla pod. Roast in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes. Once cool, serve with the ice cream.
Choose the best pure vanilla – real vanilla is the pod of an orchid, which needs to be hand pollinated from mainly tiny plantations in the Indian Ocean, hence its price. Vanilla essence is manufactured from a chemical compound and has quite a harsh, synthetic flavour. You only need a tiny amount of real vanilla either in extract form, paste or bean to give that delicious vanilla flavour. WASTE LESS Add vanilla to cakes, meringues and chocolate recipes.