red beet, rose water, honey, goat cheese and goat milk ice cream


Nik Sharma

Hey Friends, I’m a multi-award-winning and best-selling cookbook author and photographer.

red beet, rose water, honey, goat cheese and goat milk ice cream| A Brown Table

For someone that professes to love ice cream that much, I almost shuddered when I realized I haven’t made a batch in a long, long, long time. Like any devoted home ice cream maker enthusiast, I always keep the canister frozen and at one point, even pondered at getting a second one as a “backup”, so I know my love is pure. It was time to rectify this immediately! So to break this cycle, I’m sharing this sweet floral accented pink hued ice cream and even if you have second thoughts about beets in a dessert, I urge you to keep an open mind, this one might just surprise you (in a pleasant way hopefully)!

This was a hard one to name, too many ingredients that stood out and deserved a mention, so I apologize in advance if it sounds way too long. I started off by oven roasting my red beets before I puréed and stirred them into goat milk. The roasting helps to enhance the natural sweetness of the beets by cooking the sugars inside and give them a light caramel flavor. The ice cream base is sweetened with a little honey and brown sugar and then flavored with a light dash of rose water. The natural tanginess of the goat cheese helps to balance the flavors.  

I did notice one really interesting feature about the red pigment known as Betalain in the beets, it started off as pink but turned red after the ice cream base was removed from the hot stove and then went back to pink as it cooled down. I know the pigment color is pH sensitive (acidic/alkaline environments) but this temperature effect was new to me. 

red beet, rose water, honey, goat cheese and goat milk ice cream| A Brown Table
red beet, rose water, honey, goat cheese and goat milk ice cream| A Brown Tablered beet, rose water, honey, goat cheese and goat milk ice cream| A Brown Table
red beet, rose water, honey, goat cheese and goat milk ice cream| A Brown Tablered beet, rose water, honey, goat cheese and goat milk ice cream| A Brown Table

Here are some of my kitchen tips that you might find useful when preparing this ice cream,

  • Roast your red beets by wrapping them in aluminum foil and placing them for about 45-60 minutes in an oven at 400F. The beets will cook in their own steam and should be very soft when done. Peel and purée the beets using a food processor. 
  • Some people may find rose water to be a little intense in flavor, so I recommend adding the smaller amount listed below. If you like it by all means bump it up but not too much or it will mask the taste of the beets. 

My ice cream base recipe is loosely based on the basic technique used in Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at Home

red beet, rose water, honey, goat cheese and goat milk ice cream| A Brown Table

red beet, rose water, honey, goat cheese and goat milk ice cream

yields: approximately 1 generous quart 


1 1/2 cups red beets, roasted, peeled and pureed

2 cups goat milk, full fat

1 cup heavy cream

4 tablespoons honey (I used the clover variety)

1/2 cup (3 1/2 ounces) brown sugar

1  1/2 tablespoons cornstarch

2 tablespoons water

4 tablespoons goat cheese, softened to room temperature

1-2 tablespoons rose water (use 1 tablespoon for a milder flavor and 2 for a stronger one)

1. In a large bowl, add and whisk together the puréed red bets, goat milk and heavy cream. Stir in the honey and brown sugar. Transfer the contents to a medium thick bottomed saucepan and heat on medium-high flame with occasional stirring. Bring the contents of the pan to a rolling boil for one minute. 

2. While the the saucepan is heating, quickly mix the cornstarch and the water in a small bowl to form a slurry. Pour the slurry into the boiling contents of the saucepan and whisk vigorously to combine. Boil the contents of the pan for 2 additional minutes until the entire ice cream base acquires a thick custard like consistency. Remove from stove and stir about half cup of the hot ice cream base into a large bowl containing the goat cheese, whisk until smooth. Add the rest of the ice cream base and whisk to combine evenly.

3. Pass the liquid through a sieve to filter out any beet flesh particles. Collect the ice cream base in a container, cover the surface of the liquid with cling film and allow to cool to room temperature.

4. Once the ice cream mixture has cooled to room temperature, stir in the rose water. Transfer the contents into a 1 gallon ziplock bag and seal airtight. Place the bag in  an ice cold water bath and cool to around 40F or until ice cold.

5. Once the ice cream base has cooled, pour it into the prefrozen canister of your ice cream maker and churn as per the manufacturer’s instructions. (I normally churn for 30 minutes until the ice cream resembles a soft-serve consistency). Transfer the ice cream base into a freezer-safe container and layer the surface with parchment paper. Press gently to remove any air bubbles and seal the container with the lid. Freeze for at least 4 hours until the ice cream is firm before serving. 

28 Responses

  1. I am OBSESSED with these photos and equally obsessed with goat milk ice cream. It’s one of my favorite flavors at the moment. I love that you added goat cheese. Total genius.

  2. This is SO beautiful. I literally gasped when I saw your sneak peeks via social media, and I’ve been looking forward to this post every since. Beets have such an amazing, vibrant pigment. The way it shines through in the ice cream is gorgeous. Beautiful photography, as usual. I absolutely love all your process shots!! So inspiring, Nik!

    1. Thanks, Betty! Your photos are stunning. I keep thinking about how you should expand and explore food photography more. You are very talented

  3. This sounds incredible Nik! I’m a huge fan of goat cheese. I think it’s great with beats but also works so well in sweet dishes, so bravo on doing both of those at the same time!

    1. Michelle, I need to visit Milk Bar and also get that book you mentioned. I have some milk related ideas that I want to put into pastry stuff and I have a feeling Cristina Tossi’s book will help.

  4. Stunning photos as usual! I love this combination can’t wait to try and yes, we have two ice cream makers in our nest and do use it as a backup especially for birthday parties.

    1. See, I need to do this, at first I thought I was crazy and I’m glad I wrote about it because everyone else seems to have one. I can proudly now stand up and say, I’m an ice cream addict 🙂

  5. I would love to try it but will be scare to do it on my own. Is their any place where I can place and order more info plz?

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