Thursday, June 11, 2009

Ice Cream!

I love ice cream!  I mean, l-o-v-e it! BUT I don't love writing about it or even photographing it.  (It may be harder to do than savory foods.)  For the past several months I've been making ice cream along with the other desserts I've blogged about but have been unmotivated to share my experiences.  I couldn’t tell you how many times I tried writing this post, starting and stopping, starting and stopping.  So, instead of telling about and giving you one recipe I’ve decided to make this a three for one.  :)DSC01253

I’m pretty sure you won’t be shocked to read that the first ice cream of the season I made was snickerdoodle ice cream.  I found recipe over at Our Best Bites.  My only changes were to cut back on the cinnamon and use ready made snickerdoodle cookie dough from the store.  A bit of  advice? Make your own cookies or better yet make your own snickerdoodle bars.  :)

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Snickerdoodle Ice Cream

1 1/2 c. 2% milk

1 c. sugar

2 eggs

1 c. heavy cream

1 tsp. vanilla

2 tsp. cinnamon (1 1/2 tsp.)

About 1 1/2-2 c. chopped high-quality sugar cookies, *snickerdoodles, or shortbread cookies

Combine milk and sugar in a medium saucepan.  Heat over medium until bubbles form around the edges.  Remove from heat.

In a small mixing bowl (or really big cereal bowl), whisk eggs thoroughly.  Very slowly, add 1/2 of the hot milk mixture, whisking the eggs constantly.  Return pan with remaining milk mixture to stovetop and then whisk the egg and milk mixture back into the saucepan, whisking constantly.  Add whipping cream.  Over medium-low heat and stirring constantly, continue heating the custard mixture to 160 degrees.  It will start to thicken quickly; remove from heat when your finger leaves a track on a spoon coated in the custard mixture. 

Add in cinnamon and vanilla.  Place the custard in an airtight container and chill in the refrigerator several hours. 

When ready to make ice cream, pour chilled custard into ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer's instructions.  When the ice cream is almost done (like maybe the ice cream maker's struggling a little...it looks like really firm soft-serve...), add chopped cookies.  Remove from ice cream freezer and place in another air-tight container and freeze an hour or two (at least...but not longer than a couple of days) to allow it to firm up.

*I used the grocery store’s ready made snickerdoodle cookie dough but would suggest that you make your own.  They really weren’t that good.

 

This next one isn't going to be much of a surprise either.  I made banana fosters ice cream which I found on Cafe Johnsonia. The texture of this ice cream wasn’t as smooth or creamy as others and I think it may be due to the homemade caramel that is mixed with the custard but we loved it.  DSC01514

Bananas Foster Ice Cream
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup heavy cream (not ice cold)
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 tsp. sea salt
2 cups whole or 2% milk (I used 2%)
2 whole eggs or 4 egg yolks (I used 4 egg yokes)
1-2 ripe bananas (depending on how big they are) (I used 2.)
2-4 tablespoons dark rum (optional--can use 1 tsp. rum extract, too.) (I used 1/2 tsp. of rum extract.)

In a 2-quart pan, combine sugar and water. Bring to a boil and cook without stirring until the sugar becomes a deep amber color. Add the heavy cream and stir well. Add the lemon juice, vanilla extract, butter, and salt. (It may clump up, just keep stirring and it will smooth out.)

Transfer caramel to a heat proof bowl to cool.**
Once caramel is cool, whisk in the eggs (or egg yolks).
Prepare an ice bath. (You will need it to quickly cool the hot custard.)

In another pan, heat milk until very hot.** Gradually add the hot milk to the caramel/egg mixture. Whisk well and pour it back into the pan. Cook over medium heat until the custard reaches a temperature of 160 degrees F on an instant read thermometer. Strain the custard through a fine mesh sieve into a clean bowl. Place the bowl in an ice bath to cool.

Peel the bananas, break them into chunks and put them into a blender. Add some of the custard and puree until smooth. (I didn’t puree the bananas.  I just smushed them with the potato masher.) Add the puree back to the bowl with remaining custard. Stir well. Add the rum, if using.

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and chill until very cold. Freeze in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer directions.
Makes 1 quart.

**Alternatively, you could add the milk to the caramel while it's still hot and then add it to the eggs that have been whisked in a separate bowl. It just depends on how you want to do it. It will work just as well either way. My caramel just happened to be cold, so I added the eggs to the caramel.**

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Lindsey has this post on making custard base ice cream which I found very helpful. Per Whitney at Rookie Cookie, Lindsey is Utah’s very own ice cream whisperer.  If you’d like to see another recipe of Lindsey’s I’ve made please visit here.

 

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This last recipe is for banana ice cream which I found at Spork or Foon.  (On a side note Teanna is attempting to recreate Top Chef recipes at home which I think is quite impressive!) I really, really liked this recipe which put to good use the overage of ripened bananas that I had on hand at the time.  Best thing?  No cooking!

Banana Ice Cream Recipe:

makes 1 quart

You will need:

2 cups of half and half (I used 1 cup 2%milk & 1 cup of heavy cream)

1 can of sweetened condensed milk

1 cup of heavy cream

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

2 very ripe bananas

2 teaspoons of fresh lemon juice

Mix together the first four ingredients until combined, making sure the condensed milk is well blended with the other liquids.* Chill until cold.

Pour mixture into an ice cream maker and freeze accordingly.

Mash the bananas with the lemon juice and add to the ice cream maker 2 minutes before it's finished. Transfer ice cream to a freezer safe container, cover and freeze for at least 3 hours.

*I didn’t wait to add the mashed bananas.  I added it into the milk mixture and chilled it as well.

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