A cheery orange custard is served with vanilla ice cream.
Winter, when tangerines, clementines and mandarin oranges abound is the time to make this dessert. It harkens back to the Dreamsicles of our childhood and can be easily converted for vegans. The custard can be made up to three days ahead of time.
In a medium, non-reactive sauce pan, whisk together the juice, zest, cornstarch, sugar, and salt. Try to incorporate the cornstarch with few lumps. Any remaining lumps will disappear as the mixture heats.
Add the rosemary springs and, over medium heat, bring the mixture to a boil. Simmer and stir until it has thickened and will coat a spoon. This takes only 2 or 3 minutes. Taste and add more sugar if necessary. If you have added sugar, stir until it is fully incorporated in the hot custard.
Strain the hot custard through a screen sieve to remove the rosemary and the larger pieces of zest.
Stir the butter into the hot custard until it melts and is fully incorporated.
At this point you have several choices. Simplest is to put the custard in a bowl and refrigerate. To serve, scoop both the custard and the ice cream into individual bowls.
Serving option: Divide the custard among clear serving dishes and refrigerate. Layer vanilla ice cream on top to serve.
Serving option: Chill the custard in a 1/2 thick sheet, cut it into cubes, and serve on top of ice cream.
To make this recipe vegan, simply omit the butter and use a vegetarian ice cream.