Bienmesabe (Spanish almond cream) ice cream
The famous Spanish almond cream Bienmesabe from the Canary Islands (as per a recipe by Lisa and Tony Sierra), in classic combinations with vanilla ice cream
The Bienmesabe almond cream
  • About 500 ml (about 2½ cups) blanched almonds
  • 475 ml (about 2 cups) water
  • 225 ml (close to 1 cup) sugar
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 3 egg yolks
  • pinch of salt
The vanilla ice cream (custard-based)
  • 300 ml (1,3 cups) whole milk
  • 200 ml (close to 1 cup) cream
  • 1 vanilla pod, split lengthwise, or 1-2 teaspoon(s) of good quality genuine vanilla extract
  • 100 gram (close to ½ cup) sugar
  • pinch of salt
  1. Blanch the almonds and toast until beginning to turn golden brown (should take about 5-10 minutes in an oven pre-heated to 175 degrees C (350 degrees F). Shuffle and flip the almonds after about half the time to ensure an even toasting.
  2. Grate the almonds using a food processor or almond/grain mill - the finer grind, the smoother final consistency of the cream.
  3. Combine the ground almond, the zest of the lemon, the sugar, the salt and the cinnamon in a sauce pan with the water and bring to the boil.
  4. Turn down the heat and simmer for about 5 minutes while whisking constantly.
  5. Take off from the heat and let cool down for about 30 minutes.
  6. Whisk together the egg yolks. Then add them to the almond cream in the saucepan and return to the heat.
  7. Bring to a boil on medium heat (or at least up to about 82-84º C /189-183ºF). Take off from the heat and let cool down.
  8. Store in refrigerator, where the almond cream should hold for at least 3 days.
  9. Bienmesabe can be rippled into vanilla ice cream, or served (cold or warm) together with vanilla ice cream. It can also be enjoyed on its own.