YIELDS: 2 Servings PREP TIME: 30 mins COOK TIME: 16 mins TOTAL TIME: 46  mins

A dessert trifecta like no other! Sweet, ripe strawberries with a spicy twist, deliciously floral, elderberry ice cream, topped with crunchy, buttery, shortbread cookies infused with a hint of garden fresh thyme.



Black Pepper Strawberries
2 handfuls strawberries 
Pinch of sugar 
Splash of balsamic vinegar 
Freshly ground pepper to taste (black, pink, or Szechuan peppercorns

Elderflower Ice Cream
½ cup milk 
½ cup heavy cream 
1 ½ tbsp sugar 
2 egg yolks 
1-2 heads elderflower (grow your own elderflower or substitute 2-3 tbsp dried elderflower

Thyme Shortbread 
2 tbsp golden caster sugar 
3 ½ tbsp butter 
½ cup flour 
1 tbsp chopped fresh thyme 

Food processor
Cutting board 
Baking sheet 
Large saucepan 
Mixing bowls
Ice cream maker 
Fine mesh strainer 



  1. To make the shortbread, combine the sugar, butter, and flour in a food processor and pulse a few times. 
  2. Add the chopped thyme and a little bit of cold water until the dough comes together. 
  3. Alternatively, rub the butter into the flour by hand until it becomes breadcrumb-like in texture. Then add the sugar and thyme (plus water, if needed) and bring the dough together.
  4. Knead briefly, form into a cylinder, wrap tightly in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.  
  5. Preheat oven to 325°F. Once fully chilled, remove the plastic wrap and slice into rounds. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 12-16 minutes, until golden brown. 
  6. Sprinkle with a bit of extra sugar, if desired, and allow to cool on the baking sheet. 
  7. For the ice cream, thoroughly clean the elderflower heads and tear into pieces. 
  8. Combine the milk, cream, and elderflower in a large saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a simmer then remove from heat. 
  9. In a separate bowl, whisk together the sugar and egg yolks. 
  10. Strain the flavored cream into the egg yolk mixture while whisking continuously. Return the mixture to the saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring continuously, until thickened. It should reach a temperature of about 180°F. 
  11. Remove from heat and transfer to the refrigerator. Once fully chilled, transfer to an ice cream maker and process according to the manufacturer’s instructions. 
  12. For the strawberries, halve or quarter the strawberries and toss in a large bowl with a splash of balsamic vinegar, a pinch of sugar, and whichever variety of freshly ground peppercorn you choose. A little goes a long way!
  13. To serve, divide the strawberries between two bowls and top with a generous scoop of ice cream. Then take a shortbread cookie or two and crumble over the top, or serve on the side for a more classic look. 

Source: Daylesford Cookery School