Oh-So-Desirable Dark Cherry & Dark Chocolate Ice-Cream

Serves 6 (1 quart)

1 1/2 cups pitted dark cherries
3/4 cup milk
1 3/4 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup sugar
Pinch of salt
1 tsp lemon juice
4 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped into small pieces

1. I don't have a cherry pitter, so used a paring knife to do the messy job. Don't worry about this part - doesn't take more than 10 mins.

2. Put cherries, milk, 1 cup of the cream, sugar and salt into a saucepan. Heat on medium till steamy, then turn the heat down to low and let it sit that way for 15 mins. Remove from heat and let it cool for another 15-20 mins. Then pour into a blender and puree completely (careful of the hot liquid - make sure your blender lid is on tight!).

3. Once pureed*, put the mixture into a large bowl and add the remaining cream. Stir. Then refrigerate for 3-4 hours.

4. Before putting the mixture into the ice-cream maker, stir in the lemon juice. The churn according to your machine's instructions.

5. Two mins before your ice-cream stops churning, add the chopped chocolate pieces. Keep the chocolate frozen till ready to use (or else it will melt into the ice-cream). Once the ice-cream stops churning, it will be pretty soft. So put in an airtight container and freeze for at least an hour.

*At this point you could strain the puree to get rid of the cherry skins, and I think I'll do that next time. Because I believe it would result in a smoother consistency and keep its flavor for a few extra days in the freezer.