M. Andrew Gordon

(Just add bacon?) Ice Cream

In Desserts on May 20, 2010 at 6:30 am

Finally, I am ready to write a post about ice cream, just in time for the summer season (for those in areas where seasons are readily differentiated).  Back in the winter I had posted about the habanero-ginger ice cream from the Dr. No dinner party.

Mint Chip Ice Cream

Since then, I have made several different types of ice cream using two main recipes as the base.  One recipe I cribbed from Jeni Britton in the June 2008 Food & Wine.  That recipe uses cornstarch and cream cheese to help make the ice cream even creamier.  Another recipe I have used, which is slightly more traditional, was pulled together from several sources and uses egg yolks as the thickener to make custard.  At this point, I can’t really say one is better than the other, but the Britton recipe base seems easier to make.

The beauty of making ice cream is that, for the most part, the base recipe stays the same and you can tweak additions.  This can come in the way of another liquid, like the Stout Ice Cream, as an addition that gets strained out like in the coffee, basil, and mint ice creams, or with a pureed fruit like in the raspberry ice cream.

And despite the title of this post, I have not made bacon ice cream.  But I’m sure it’s only a matter of time…

Britton Vanilla Ice Cream – adapted from Jeni Britton’s recipe in June 2008 Food & Wine

  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 ½ ounces cream cheese, softened (3 tablespoons)
  • 1 ¼ cups heavy cream
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 ½ tablespoons light corn syrup
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt

1.     Fill a large bowl with ice water. In a small bowl, mix 2 tablespoons of the milk with the cornstarch. In another large bowl, whisk the cream cheese until smooth.

2.     In a large saucepan, combine the remaining milk with the heavy cream, sugar, and corn syrup. Bring the milk mixture to a boil and cook over moderate heat until the sugar dissolves, about 4 minutes. Off the heat, gradually whisk in the cornstarch mixture. Return to a boil and cook over moderately high heat until the mixture is slightly thickened, about 1 minute.

3.     Gradually whisk the hot milk mixture into the cream cheese until smooth. Whisk in the vanilla extract and the salt. Set the bowl in the ice water bath and let stand, stirring occasionally, until cold, about 20 minutes.

4.     Strain the ice cream base into an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions.  Freeze the vanilla ice cream until firm, about 4 hours.

Traditional Ice Cream base

  • 3 egg yolks
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 cups cream
  • 1 cup half & half
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  1. In a large bowl whisk the egg yolks and sugar together until light yellow and thick. Set aside.
  2. Combine the cream and milk in a saucepan and bring to a simmer. Slowly stir into the egg mixture. It is important to add the milk slowly and stir so you don’t end up cooking the eggs. Return to the saucepan and cook while stirring until the mixture is slightly thickened. Pour into ice cream maker and follow manufacturer’s directions.

¨      Raspberry Ice Cream: Make Britton Ice Cream.   Combine one quart fresh raspberries, ¼ cup sugar, and 1 teaspoon lemon juice in a food processor.  Pulse until well mixed.  Strain to remove seeds, reserving raspberry juice.  After cream mixture is poured into ice cream maker, pour in reserved raspberry juice and make ice cream per directions.

¨      Basil-Pine Nut Ice Cream: Make Britton Ice Cream, adding two cups fresh basil leaves to cream after the cornstarch has been added.  Toast ½ cup pine nuts until golden brown.  Strain out basil before pouring cream into ice cream maker.  After 20 minutes of churning, add pine nuts and continue per directions.

¨      Mint Chip Ice Cream: Make Britton Ice Cream, adding three cups packed mint leaves to milk/cream mixture once sugar is dissolved.  Strain out leaves after cooling and 20 minutes into churning; add 4 ounces of chopped semi-dark chocolate.

¨      Coffee Ice Cream: Make traditional ice cream.  Roughly chop 5 tablespoons coffee beans.  Add to cream and half & half.  Strain before pouring into ice cream maker.

¨      Oyster Stout Ice Cream.  Make traditional ice cream. Reduce 2 cups of Harpoon Oyster Stout to one cup.  Reduce cream by half and add to cream and proceed as directed.  If desired, mix in 4 ounces of chopped semi-dark chocolate.

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