You can build the bonbons in advance -- then bring on the chocolate and ice cream while serving.

SHORT ON TIME? You can build the bonbons in advance -- then bring on the chocolate and ice cream while serving. (Liz O. Baylen / Los Angeles Times)

Total time: 45 minutes, plus freezing time

Servings: Makes 12 bonbons

Note: This recipe makes 1 quart of ice cream, more than is needed for the bonbons.

1 pint strawberries, stemmed and cleaned

1 cup milk

1 cup whipping cream

1/4 cup corn syrup

2 egg yolks

1/4 cup sugar

1/2 vanilla bean, scraped and seeded

Grated peel and juice of 1 small lime

12 vanilla wafers

4 to 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

1. Purée the strawberries in a food processor or blender and set aside. You will have about 1 cup.

2. In a saucepan, heat the milk, whipping cream and corn syrup over medium heat until just simmering. In a small bowl, combine the egg yolks, sugar and vanilla, then slowly whisk into the milk mixture. Continue to heat, stirring constantly, until the cream thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon, 5 to 6 minutes.

3. Strain the custard into a bowl over an ice bath, and stir occasionally until the mixture is chilled. Stir in the puréed strawberries and the lime peel and juice.

4. Freeze the mixture in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer's instructions, then spoon into a chilled glass dish. Cover and freeze until solid.

5. To assemble the bonbons, spoon a small (1-ounce) scoop of ice cream onto each of the vanilla wafers. Place the wafers on a large baking sheet and freeze while you melt the chocolate. Place the chocolate in a bowl set over a pan of simmering water and melt gently over moderate heat, stirring occasionally. Allow to cool slightly, then spoon 2 heaping teaspoons chocolate over each of the frozen bonbons. Serve the bonbons immediately, or place back in the freezer until ready to serve.

Each serving: 166 calories; 1 gram protein; 25 grams carbohydrates; 1 gram fiber; 9 grams fat; 5 grams saturated fat; 12 mg. cholesterol; 22 mg. sodium.