Gorse, glorious gorse

We have just completed another phase of drainage work at Lochaberfarm which is an essential part of the upkeep of the land, and will, we hope, provide a more fertile and productive area of land with which to farm.  I wrote back in March last year a post about the wonder of drains – which I have come to find a new respect for. As part of this work, we have been pruning back some of our gorse, the branches and roots of which have been pervading the drains and ditches. During the recent respite of warm sunny days, there has been a wonderful coconut aroma given off by this daunting looking shrub wafting around the farm – this smell has always enticed me and the brilliant yellow of the flowers looks fantastic against blue skies. Those who follow my blog will know that I love a bit of a forage…and I decided that gorse was to be my next challenge.

Gorse is in bloom for a large part of the year, but during Spring, the coconut flavour is at its most intense, so this is the time to go for it. A quick recipe search revealed a fair number of options, but I decided on a recipe for gorse flower ice cream and set off to collect a few handfuls of Lochaberfarm gorse flowers.

When home, I warmed equal quantities of whole milk and double cream with 2 cups of the gorse flowers I had collected.

This was cooled and left in the fridge overnight to infuse, the next day I used this infusion to make my ice cream. You can find the full recipe here.

The finished ice cream was a wonderful pale, primrose yellow. It was really creamy and had a delicate, flowery, coconut taste. Gorse has now definitely earned it’s place on my list of foraging favourites, and this ice cream has been an unexpected bonus discovery of the recent drainage work.


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