I was travelling for my job during the week leading up February Ottolenghi club, which meant I wouldn't have time to make icecream. Instead I made posset! I've tried my hand at posset once before 5 years ago, funnily enough for the same reason; I guess a dish of refrigerated cream and sugar is the next obvious choice after a dish of freeze-churned cream and sugar.
I've since learned that curdling the cream is another essential part of posset. This allows the dessert to set to a velvety self-supporting consistency in the fridge. Ottolenghi's version uses lime zest and leaves to infuse the cream, then lime juice for the curdling. He'd have us pile it up with papaya for serving, but I preferred to use mango. The overall effect is both rich and refreshing, sweet and sour - a beauty in its own right, and not simply an icecream understudy.
(slightly adapted from Yotam Ottolenghi's Guardian column)
900mL double cream
18 fresh or frozen makrut lime leaves
6 strips lime zest + finely grated zest of 1 lime
juice of 3 limes
200g caster sugar
generous pinch of salt
2 small mangoes
Place the cream in a large saucepan. Bash the lime leaves with a mortar and pestle to release their fragrance; add them and the lime zest strips to the cream. Turn the heat up to medium-high and bring the mixture just to a simmer. Turn off the heat and allow the cream to infuse with the lime for 30 minutes.
Add the sugar and salt to the cream and set it back on medium-high heat. Bring it all to the boil, stirring regularly. Boil until the cream almost bubbles up to the rim of the saucepan and turn off the heat. Strain out the lime pieces.
Stir in the juice of one lime, which might curdle the cream a little. Strain the mixture again, this time pouring it equally into 8 ramekins or cups. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours.
When it's time to serve dessert, dice up the mangoes and dress them in the remaining lime juice. Spoon the mangoes onto the posset cups and sprinkle over the fine lime zest.