The Secret Ingredient (Black Pepper): Sweet Cream Ice Cream with Strawberry-Black Pepper Sauce

The Secret Ingredient

Every month we highlight a different ingredient and share weekly recipes that showcase its uses.

[Photographs: Kerry Saretsky]

There was a point in the last few years when the combination of strawberry and black pepper became quite trendy. In fact, I believe the reason I got into business school is because I wrote a strawberry-black pepper tart recipe for my interviewer. Except I never tried it! Never tried the tart, never tried the combination.

So here, I tried a riff on my favorite—strawberries and cream. Buy some sweet cream ice cream, and quickly stew together strawberries and black pepper. What was I missing all this time! The sauce is sweet, but it stings your tongue like little black pepper pop rocks. Poured over the sweet cream ice cream, this 5-minute dessert becomes unusual and sophisticated. The black pepper is like a secret agent, enacting a covert op under a thick, sweet, red cover, taking the sauce from standard to exceptional.

Which does prove the point, sometimes trends are worth following. (Next up will be that strawberry-black pepper tart!)