Strawberry, Basil & Black Pepper Ice Cream + Ice Cream Maker Giveaway!

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What is it about ice cream that makes it one of the world’s most loved comfort foods?  Many nights, after having a hard day, I’ve cuddled up on the sofa with a small tub of ice cream after everyone else is asleep (I’ve eaten more tubs of Ben & Jerry’s than I care to admit!); it always makes me feel better.  There’s just something special about ice cream.

I’ve tried making my own ice cream before, with the “hand-churning” method, but never really got excellent results.  This is where you prepare your ice cream mixture, freeze it, then every 2 hours, take it out, scrape it into the bowl of an electric mixer, mix it to break up the ice crystals, scrape it back into the freezer bowl, freeze it, and repeat the entire process another 3 times.  How annoying!  And can you believe I have never owned an ice cream maker in my entire life?  Yes, I do live under a rock.

Ice cream makers basically do the “hand-churning” method for you.  All you need to do is turn it on, pour your ice cream mixture in, and leave it for 15-20 minutes to churn the mixture, in a way that is similar to a stand mixer.  After that you’ll have a soft-serve consistency, and if you would like it to be firmer, just pour it into a freezer-safe container and freeze for a few hours, scoop it out and enjoy.

If you were to take a look at my Firefox bookmarks, you’d find heaps of ice cream recipes.  Even though I’ve never had an ice cream maker, a girl can dream, right?

Last week, my dreams came true, when Kitchenware Direct, my go-to shop for kitchen supplies, heard my ice cream maker pleas and sent me one of my very own (and they have one for you, too!).  I immediately gave my red Cuisinart ice cream maker a test run with this dark chocolate sorbet…

I used my cherished Valrhona cocoa powder for this recipe and the results were spectacularly dark and delightfully creamy.  This was an easy recipe, consisting of pantry staples (cocoa powder, sugar, and vanilla) and water.  I wasn’t sure what to expect with my first go at sorbet and found that when the ice cream maker had been going for 20 minutes, the consistency of the sorbet was like a super-thick milkshake.  I froze it for a few hours (it was about six, I think) to get it to scoopable consistency.  It was really silky and smooth, I was quite pleased with myself!

I didn’t realize what an ice cream maker actually was.  It reminds me of my Zoku Quick Pop Maker; they both have a silvery surface that freezes liquids instantly (and wet fingers!).  The ice cream maker has a big paddle attachment (sort of like a stand mixer) to keep the mixture constantly moving, ensuring the end result is creamy and smooth.  There’s only one button on this machine, which is the on/off switch.

While I gave the ice cream maker a test run with a sorbet, I wanted to make ice cream for my official review post.  I chose a recipe in the latest issue of delicious. magazine for strawberry, basil and black pepper ice cream by one of my favorite food bloggers, Katie Quinn Davies from What Katie Ate.  I had never tried basil and strawberry together before, although I had heard it is a great combination.  But what is this about black pepper?  I couldn’t resist making this recipe.

Fresh strawberries, lemon, lime and basil!  The strawberries will need to sit in the refrigerator to macerate with a bit of juice from the lemon and lime and some sugar for 2 hours.  Afterwards, half of the strawberries will go in a blender, along with a few basil leaves and fresh finely ground black pepper to puree.  The rest of the strawberries are to be crushed with a potato masher and set aside.  Milk, cream and vanilla beans are added to the pureed strawberries.  This mixture then goes into the ice cream maker.

Don’t be too concerned about the size of this machine, by the way.  It’s actually quite compact and fits easily into our cabinets.  Compared with our kettle, it isn’t too much larger.

According to reviews of this product on Kitchenware Direct, a common complaint seemed to be the noise of the machine while it was churning.  Personally, I didn’t find the noise to be too loud.  My food processor is much louder than this ice cream maker is!

After 10 minutes of churning, the crushed strawberries are added to the mixture.  After 20 minutes, I turned off the machine.  The ice cream was at a very soft, soft-serve consistency.  I had a taste and was surprised at how wonderfully tasty it was!  I scraped out the ice cream into a freezer-safe container and froze it overnight.

Scraping out the ice cream from the freezer bowl is a little tricky.  You’ll need to use a silicone spoon or spatula as a hard plastic or metal one will damage the bowl.  And once the machine stops churning, the ice cream starts sticking to the bowl.  So I’ve discovered that you have to be pretty quick to scrape out the ice cream easily!

The next morning, I sampled some ice cream.  The texture was just like the ice cream I’m used to and scooped out easily.  The flavor was brilliant!  With the first bites, you can really taste the basil, and as you eat more, you start tasting the fresh strawberries.  Every few bites, there’s a slight tingle from a piece of black pepper.  My only complaint is that it left a sort of greasy-mouth feel for some reason, which was a little odd.

((Update: I’ve discovered a possible cause or two of this greasy-mouth feel.  It could be that there is too much fat content in the ice cream, however, I doubt this is the reason in my case as I was just simply following a recipe.  The other cause is over-churning, which could turn all that cream into butter!  Just like how you’re not supposed to whisk cream too much, otherwise it’ll turn into butter?  It appears the same thing goes for ice cream makers, and this, I believe, is the cause of the greasy feeling I experienced.  Since writing this post, I have made two more batches of ice cream; one was matcha, and it had the greasy feeling as well.  The next batch was peanut butter, and I was sure not to over-churn.  I churned the peanut butter ice cream for only 15 minutes, whereas I had been churning my ice creams for 20 minutes.  The peanut butter ice cream did not have a greasy feeling whatsoever.  Problem solved!))

But I can overlook that because this is some mighty delicious ice cream.

I am absolutely thrilled to own my first ever ice cream maker and am now looking forward to working through my extensive list of ice cream recipes that I’ve bookmarked.  I can guarantee you that there will be Biscoff ice cream, peanut butter ice cream and matcha ice cream to begin with, then I’ll work on some more interesting flavors.

Recipes for the dark chocolate sorbet and strawberry, basil & black pepper ice cream are at the very end of this post.


Now, how about this giveaway?  If you live in Australia, you can enter to win your very own ice cream maker, just like mine, in your own choice of color – red, blue, orange, pink, yellow, or green.

Here are the rules:

  1. Open to Australian residents only.
  2. Prize is one Cuisinart 1.5 litre ice cream maker in the color of the winner’s choice, provided by Kitchenware Direct.
  3. Leave one comment only on this post and tell me your favorite ice cream flavor – for extra entries, as below, please leave a separate comment.
  4. For one extra entry, tweet about this giveaway and be sure to tag me (@jamieanne), then leave another comment here telling me about your tweet.
  5. For another extra entry, post about this giveaway on Facebook by liking my page, The Sweetest Kitchen, and tagging it in your post, then leave yet another comment here telling me about your post.
  6. This giveaway closes on Monday, October 29 at 11AM (AEST).
  7. One winner will be selected and notified by email, after which the winner will need to respond within 3 days or another winner will be selected, so be sure to include an active email address.

Good luck!

This competition & review is made possible by Brad from Kitcheware Direct.


Congratulations, Virginia Mason!  Your tweet earned you a free Cuisinart ice cream maker in the color of your choice!


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  1. says

    Ooooh, both of these look fabulous – and how strange about the greasy feeling from over-churning. The icecream maker I had (which was terrible) would take hours to freeze – but this sounds like it takes minutes! and it comes it pink so that has me sold!

    My favourite icecream flavour would HAVE to be chocolate gelato.- and that would be the first thing I would make!

  2. says

    Hi Jamieanne!
    My favourite icecream flavour is Love Potion 31 which is a white and dark choc icecream with little raspberry filled choc hearts and raspberry sauce swirled through. It’s divine!

    If I won this machine, I’d like to try out making kiwifruit sorbet for my husband, as well as a Key Lime Tart flavoured icecream.

  3. Alex says

    My favorite flavor hands down had to be salted caramel and white chocolate. It’s bitter and sweet and I absolutely always need supervision!

  4. Mel says

    I love a rich chocolate ice-cream with fudge sauce swirled through it! I have recently started making a chocolate coconut ice-cream, with coconut milk, and would love an ice-cream machine to make it in! :)

    • Carmen Xie says

      O man i would so want to try that, but it’s so frustrating going to my freezer every hour to mix the ice cream whilst it’s freezing up.

  5. Sash Hinton says

    I can’t go past hazlenut gelato and would love to perfect a recipe using this machine!

  6. Trina B says

    I *loved* pistachio ice-cream as a kid, but I haven’t seen it around – or maybe I haven’t been looking hard enough!! I’d love to try my own version :)

  7. Molly says

    Yum! I’d love to try your dark chocolate sorbet but I think my favourite flavour would be salted caramel. I love the contrasts. :)

  8. Jackie says

    I might have to try some of the above flavours – yum! I’m a bit partial to cookies & cream (a little boring I know, but you can’t go past a classic) although for home made I quite like hazelnut & breadcrumb, but because I’ve only ever made it by hand (not machine) it goes a little bit crystally :-)

  9. Virginia Mason says

    My favourite ice-cream is strawberries and cream – delicious in a waffle cone, bowl or straight out of the pot. I also like to think that is a healthy desert as it has fruit in it!

  10. Virginia Mason says

    I like The Sweetest Kitchen on facebook. I have shared this giveaway on facebook and tagged you in the post. Thanks for a chance at this delicious giveaway!

  11. Colleen Stewart says

    I love the red one..I would start with Chocolate / strawberry icecream…my grandsons and I would have so much fun with this.

  12. Amanda Nawer says

    That sounds and looks delicious and so easily made. Only wish I had an ice cream maker (:

  13. Amanda Nawer says

    My favorite is raspberry ripple the delicate favors savory through onto your tongue and oh so yummy.

  14. Deborah Callaway says

    Vanilla bean, honey and macadamia nut ice cream, smooth not overly sweet with crunchy bits, who could ask for more?

    And Id choose a pink one cause everything my son picks for me is pink and he’d LOVE to help make his own ice cream.

  15. Kylie Embury says

    Peanut butter – OH YUM!
    It’s a favourite for both kids and Mum
    The only problem that I see
    Is when the kids leave none for ME!

  16. Leanne Maree Renehan says

    My favourite Ice cream flavour is Lemon Pudding. I can’t wait to try and make it myself.

  17. Julie M says

    I love Rum and Raisin. Reminds me of my courting days when we would stop for an icecream on the way home from the beach!

  18. Caroline Triebe says

    My favourite ice-cream flavour….hard toss up between rose and vanilla or lime and basil….both amazingly delicious

  19. Rachel Morris says

    Hokey Pokey is my absolute fave and has been since I was a kid! Is that lame? Lol!

  20. Melissa J Smith says

    My favourite icecream of all time is traditional vanilla because you can jazz it up with most flavours and create a new taste sensation or have it au natural and savour the vanilla bean flavour – yum

  21. Marcia Coventry says

    I adore Salted Caramel ice cream, so does Hubby the kids not so much. Do you see my evil plan….

  22. sharon ramsay says

    Chocolate icecream with a swirl of orange and cardamon icecream together is just delicious :)

  23. Michelle Solomon says

    I absolutely love key lime ice cream or secondly, sweet pumpkin and spice ice cream!!

  24. Krissy Corkran says

    Definitely mango!! Love love love fresh mango sorbet yummy. Would love to try it with some fresh mint as well.

  25. Jayne Dunell says

    I sooo Love Macadamia and chilli chocolate chip ice cream. It is the best AND it bites you back!

  26. Heidi Lin says

    My favourite ice cream flavour would definitely be Cookies and cream! It’s to die for especially when you get those crunchy cookie pieces!

  27. Liz Barnett says

    My favourite ice cream is hokey pokey. Never tried to make it but I would if I had an icecream maker!! I’d like the pink one!

  28. Michelle Solomon says

    Have tagged and shared on Facebook both The Sweetest Kitchen and the comp as well as the lovely suppliers of the awesome prize!

  29. says

    Ginger is a classic flavour and I for one love it especially with big chunks through it, if I had an ice cream maker I’d experiment by adding a different flavour to enhance it…maybe some nuts or honey comb.

  30. Dallas Larsen says

    My all time favourite flavour would be mango. The fruit freezes well so can be enjoyed all year. However after looking at the photos above I am curious to try strawberry, basil and black pepper! And you just can’t go wrong with chocolate sorbet!

  31. says

    Ginger is a classic flavour and I for one love it especially with big chunks through it, if I had an ice cream maker I’d experiment by adding a different flavour to enhance it…maybe some nuts or honey comb.

  32. Kim Goodman says

    Ferrero rocher gelato is my fav. I would love to be able to try and make this myself with an ice-cream maker at home :)

  33. Vivienne Franzen says

    I’m thinking coconut and pistachio combined into one delicious ice cream flavour!
    Have also liked and shared your page on Facebook.

  34. Karen f says

    Loved hearing yr review on ice cream making, I have been curious about how these machines shape up!!! My fav recipes wd be salted caramel mind you, yr peanut butter version has me interested!!!

  35. Helena Chinnock says

    My favorite ice cream flavor is avocado and white chocolate. I know it sounds bizarre but the ago adds creaminess and cuts through the sweetness of the chocolate. Mmmmmmm.

  36. Therese O'Keefe says

    Luv to make the strawberry basil and black pepper but you cant beat Boyesberry ripple HMMMM

  37. Pam Warburton says

    My happiest flavour is coconut, it just puts a smile on my face, and makes my taste buds sing.

  38. Caroline Lissaman says

    Peanut butter and honey. They are nice in a sandwich so I am sure the icecream will be delish too!

  39. Sarah says

    My favourite flavour is gingerbread ice cream. Combines two of my favourite things, Ice Cream and Gingerbread. Perfect for Christmas.

  40. Sonia El-Sheikh says

    I love all ice-cream! its my obsession and i refuse to let any go to waste no matter how full i am :) Mango is on the top list of flavours i love x

  41. KERRI LAIDLAW says

    This post is inspirational. I have tried a number of ice cream makers ( and many high fat recipes ) all of which have been less than successful. Ice cream was too hard, totally unscoopable not to mention the calories!!! The chocolate sorbet sounds great and the strawberry, basil and black pepper sounds fantastic.

  42. Louise B says

    Also liked & shared on Facebook

    Oooohhhh The Sweetest Kitchen and Kitchenware Direct are giving away a Cuisinart Ice Cream maker . . . check it out!!!

  43. Barbara B says

    Cookie Dough I love to death,
    It certainly has it over the rest.
    The chewy bits are a nice surprise,
    I simply can;t find a word big enough to emphasise.

  44. Annette says

    My fav flavour is chai latte. My lovely pastry chef wife made it up for me. She also created lemon curd ice cream which comes in at a close second. Nom nom nom…

  45. Tanu says

    Coconut, strawberry, lemon and macadamia nuts. At least this would be my favourite if I had an icecream maker!!

  46. Denise says

    Both my husband and I love liquorice flavoured icecream. It is not always available and but we love the strong flavour of it.

  47. Virginia says

    Chinese Guava evokes the first taste of tropical childhood holidays in Mauritius. Pure bliss!

  48. Elise says

    My favourite definitely has to be dark chocolate with crunchy peanut butter chunks. I don’t doubt at all that I could eat my weight of it!

  49. says

    When I go to a new ice-cream shop I start with chocolate flavor as I believe that if that is good the rest can be good too but if chocolate is not good than there is no hope ….
    That said, if I would have my own ice-cream maker than I would happily experiment on new flavors! Dark chocolate and fresh strawberry from my backyard would make a good start … then the wilderness of flavors could be set free!

  50. Kay Sturgeon says

    Being born in Queenslad I like Macadamia Nut Ice cream, such a great hit with all my family and friends.being not as sweet as most icecreams.

  51. Ali McMillan says

    My favorite flavor is a simple vanilla, can’t beat it is it’s made with fresh vanilla pods!

  52. Kathie Winn says

    I love licorice flavoured ice-cream… have you ever looked at your face in the mirror after eating it?? Hahahaha time to feel like a kid again!!!

  53. Anneke says

    Fresh ginger ice cream with little chunks of glace ginger sprinklet through – this is the most delicous flavour I have ever made.

  54. Fi says

    I love vanilla and always go for that when ordering, buying a brand and hopefully making it; because if they can’t get vanilla right then there is something wrong. Vanilla is sweet, subtle and goes with most desserts.

  55. Amanda says

    Gosh, that is a hard question to answer because I can never, ever go past any type of chocolate ice cream or gelati – the more chocolatey the better. There is a pasta shop near where I live that has this dangerous chocolate gelati that tastes like frozen chocolate pudding, so yummy! But I have been thinking lately of flavours I like and I think I would love to try watermelon lemon and mint ice cream.

  56. Lizzie J says

    Donut ice cream. It’s pretty simple. Smush up some of thos eiced donuts with colourful sprinkles and mix them through vanilla ice cream. Freeze, then drool over. Yummo!

  57. Lani Kennedy says

    I know it’s terribly adult, but Im always drawn to hazelnut….it is more of an “after-taste” with each mouthful, and is not too overpowering or “look at me !”

  58. Lisa Jene says

    Americans do ice cream spectacularly! Their ice cream aisle is huge, overwhelming even. I remember one was chocolate but it had peanut butter and candy pieces through it. Cookie dough ice cream was a very sweet treat. My favourite flavour is hard. I have a soft spot for mango and macadamia but chocolate chip and cookies and cream are my fallback favourites.

  59. Christina says

    it would have to be anything with a nutty element…hazelnut, pistachio etc…and can never get enough chocolate!

  60. Paula says

    I recently discovered Baci a chocolate hazlenut flavoured sorbet after having my wisdom teeth out( so icecream was one of the only things I could eat). This is so delicious it has become one of my favourite flavours.

  61. SImone N says

    My flavours mixed and quite accidentally discovered whilst pregnant with bubs 1 was Banana, chocolate and cashews!
    I thankfully back then work in a bistro so my drink was always a banana and choc milkshake on hand then if I was feeling okay I was addicted terribly addicted to having my icecream with choc and banana toppings and slightly crushed cashews over it all OMGOSH I was heaven and guess what I still eat it to today 8 years later!

  62. Tina S says

    Hmmm, a really tough one… but today I’ll say mango. But tomorrow I might say macadamia. And the day after chocolate. And the day after that vanilla…

  63. Tina S says

    I’ve liked you on Facebook, and posted a status update about your great comp, but couldn’t tag you in the post?

  64. Jennie from SA says

    My favourite ice cream flavour
    is PEACE AND QUIET ice cream.
    Any ice-cream that keeps the kids quiet
    for a while is my favourite flavour.
    Whether its old fashioned chocolate or
    something more exotic, it’s my saviour….
    ….and if its made with love in a
    Cuisinart Ice cream maker
    even tastier!

  65. Carmen Xie says

    Ice cream in general just melts my mouth away.
    But my most recent one is Yoghurt Caramel, which i had whilst travelling in Sydney and have been craving for it since. No need to feel guilty after a huge scoop since it’s made from yoghurt. The smooth sweet caramel dissolves in my mouth. Yet i will never get sick from the sweetness, because the yoghurt gives each scoop a light sour tinge after each bite. What more can I ask for?

  66. Veronica Paterson says

    I absolutely love Honey flavoured ice-cream after visiting the Golden North Ice Cream factory, I got to taste it straight after it was made.It tasted so good and I’ve loved it ever since ❤
    I would have so much fun creating many different flavours with my Cuisinart ice cream maker if I won……Your strawberry, basil & black pepper ice cream sounds like something I would make too!! ツ

  67. Veronica Paterson says

    Have liked your page, shared the competition with friends on Facebook and tagged The Sweetest Kitchen ✓✓✓

  68. Anna says

    My all time favorite icecream is jamoca almond fudge from Baskin Robbins, but at home I have vanilla as I can mix it with anything, it goes with all my puddings and I can soften it and turn it into anything I fancy at the time

  69. nuta says

    Rum & Raisin- it’s the best especially when you use real rum…now that’s good icecream for an adult!!

  70. Helen says

    Coffee, coffee, and coffee! I love all flavours but if coffee is on offer that’s the one for me.

  71. Tess Howard says

    Chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream is the best! Love it and must only every buy small cartons of it b/c I eat it all in one sitting!

  72. Lee Lin says

    My favourite is mango ice-cream, to be eaten with chopped macadamian nuts and butterscotch sauce.

  73. Tracy Harris says

    Mars Bar with a hint of Baileys Irish Creme. So deliciously sinful, it’s almost impossible to resist.

  74. Becky S says

    Love Neopolitan, i get bored with one flavour so i like to keep my tastebuds guessing with a little of each!

  75. Sarah collett says

    I love all the different ice cream ideas. Some don’t sound great but I will definitely try it and may surprise myself.

  76. Anna says

    Foster mummy to seven,
    Rocky Road Ice Cream epitomises heaven!
    Homemade outweighs the rest!
    Marshmallow! Nuts! Chocolate cookies are the best!
    A family favourite for many years,
    When made it brings on cheers!

  77. Kirsten Krohn says

    I can’t work out if i love Cookies and Cream or Passionfruit Sorbet more….decisions, decisions..

  78. Lauren r says

    birthday cake flavour– ice cream, sprinkles, little chunks of vanilla cake. it’s delicious!

  79. Rachel T says

    I would LOVE to experiment with new ice cream flavours! My absolute favourite is a memory from when I was a little girl. I think it was from one of the strawberry stands, because it was a vanilla & strawberry ice cream with real strawberry pieces in it. Yumm!

  80. Crystal McFarlane says

    I love triple choc swirl – chocolate ice cream with milk choc chips and white choc chips with swirls of chocolate topping – decadent but delicious!

  81. Angel says

    My favourite ice-cream flavour of all time: Mango and Cream! It is heaven in your mouth and pure deliciousness!

  82. Zoe says

    Oh the pink one is so lovely! Reminds me of bubblegum. :) My favourite has to be dark chocolate sorbet. I have only ever eaten it a couple of times when i’ve seen it in icecream shops, but it is amazing!

  83. Karen F says

    I love Maggie Beer’s burnt fig, honeycomb, and caramel icecream. But I would love an icecream maker, as I’m about to go on a strict diet for medical reasons and will no longer be able to eat any commericial icecream.

  84. Alma G says

    I’m a simple gal – Vanilla icecream gets my tick everytime but it has to be good vanilla preferably Madagascan Vanilla :)

  85. Gemie says

    I adore vanilla bean icing with a caramel ripple! So sweet but delicious and really dissolves my icecream cravings!

  86. Alicia says

    Chocolate Chip! Smooth, rich creamy vanilla chocolate, bombarded with thousands of tiny choc chips. I would bathe in it if I could!

  87. Jennifer Round says

    A smooth rich Peppermint mixed with Lady Grey Tea simply refreshing and a naughty treat

  88. Jo-Anne Wiszniewski says

    love to make me own icecream slightly melted or using natural yoghurt. Slightly melt whatever flavour you like i’ll go with vanilla melt licorice swirl in then put in frezeer till frozen serve with mango pears strawberries kiwi fruit passionfruit either some diced the rest as a puree.

  89. Cecilia Bell says

    Liked your FB page and shared your post on my timeline with The Sweetest Kitchen tagged in it. :)

  90. Chrissy Roberts says

    Our family does really like icecream but we just can’t eat all the new weird flavours. Just ordinary yummy icecream for us for now anyway.

  91. Michelle Warwick says

    I once had apple pie ice cream in a shop on the Sunshine Coast and it was the nicest thing I’ve ever tasted!

  92. Jennifer F says

    To own my own icecream maker would be a dream,
    Then I could make my favourite mango icecream :)

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