With a sweet tooth like mine, it’s no surprise that I love ice cream and was delighted to be invited to the launch party of two new limited edition Häagen-Dazs flavours, sold exclusively by Liberty London. Inspired by the current botanical trend, the new Häagen-Dazs Little Gardens range includes Häagen-Dazs Apricot Lavender and Häagen-Dazs Lychee Raspberry Rose available in the chocolate shop but only until April 24th.
The collaboration between the ice cream brand and Liberty London is further enhanced by two incredible living-floral displays featuring 10,000 fresh flowers by Columbia Road installation artist Rebecca Louise Law. Even if you don’t like ice cream, it’s worth a trip just to see the feature and chocolate shop windows displaying such creativity.
Arriving at the iconic London store, we were shown up to the shoe hall which had been redesigned as an ice-cream show room with entertainment from string quartet Titanium String, delicious floral-themed canapes and stunning floral displays from Flowers by Daisy.
Image : Flowers By Daisy
Tucking into the two new flavours, we heard from Alison Gray who is Häagen-Dazs master ice cream taster (what a job!) and Barry Smith, sensory expert, who both explained the process behind developing new flavours and the complexities of working with floral tastes, especially lavender and rose which can be overpowering. I was surprised at how delicately the flavours came across and excited to bring a couple of tubs home, thinking about how I could creatively use the ice cream in a recipe.
Now I’m not a natural baker or cook by any means. Following simple recipes is just about manageable but that’s as accomplished as it gets in our kitchen. That said, I do enjoy trying to think a little outside the box and decided to have a go at a very retro Arctic Roll and stuff it full of Häagen-Dazs Apricot & Lavender ice cream. The added complication of course is that the sponge has to be gluten-free so well…it was worth a shot. My recipe is adapted from this one.
Free From: Apricot & Lavender Arctic Roll
3 eggs, separated
90g caster sugar
zest of 1/2 lemon
45g rice flour
-Heat the oven to 180 degrees, or 170 if using the fan. Grease a Swiss-roll pan or 9″ by 13″ baking tray and then line it with greased baking paper
-Whisk the egg whites in bowl until frothy and add 55g of caster sugar spoon by spoo, continuing to beat until the mixture forms peaks. Set aside
-In a separate bowl, beat the egg yolks and then beat in the remaining caster sugar and lemon zest. Once mixed, add to the egg whites mixture along with the sifted rice flour and sifted cornflour, mixing well together.
-Pour the batter into the prepared baking tray before placing into the oven and baking between 10 and 15 minutes. Our fan oven has a mind of its own so I’m always careful to check it regularly towards the end.
-Turn the cake onto a clean tea towel scattered liberally with caster sugar and peel off the baking paper. Wrap the cake tightly into a roll and leave to cool. Beware – if you don’t put enough sugar onto your tea towel, the cake will stick to it as mine did (boo).
-Once the cake is cooled, unwrap it from the tea towel and spread with apricot jam before layering in spoonfuls of ice cream which you may need to defrost slightly to make it more malleable. As you add the layers of ice cream, roll the cake back in its circular shape, wrap it tightly in baking paper and then tin foil before placing in the freezer to set.
And here are a couple of mouthfuls – forgive me as I’m neither a cook, stylist or photographer (hang on a minute, what the hell am I doing blogging?!) but it was very tasty and a great little modern take on a retro classic.
Thank you so much to Häagen-Dazs and Liberty London for inviting me to the event and providing two tubs of Little Gardens range to come up with a recipe. The two limited edition flavours are available exclusively at Liberty London in the chocolate shop until 24th April. All words, opinions and images are my own unless otherwise stated.
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