Thursday, June 26, 2008

Ice Cream Without an Ice Cream Maker

I've been thinking about making ice cream for quite some time now. Most store-bought sugar-free ice cream is tasty enough, but certainly limited in variety. And while I just made vanilla ice cream this time, now that I'm confident about the process I'll be getting creative with more flavors, you can bet!

Even better, this ice cream was made with regular old milk and eggs (so no need to buy special ingredients), and made with ordinary kitchen equipment--no ice cream maker needed!

Ice Cream
makes about 2 cups

2 cups milk
2 large eggs
1/3 cup sugar (I used Whey Low granular sugar substitute)
1 tablespoon good vanilla extract

Combine milk, eggs and sugar in the top of a double boiler. (I use a glass bowl that sits atop a small saucepan.) Whisk to combine. Put about 2-3 inches water in the bottom of double boiler and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Once the water boils, reduce heat to maintain a low simmer and place your milk mixture on top. (If you're using a bowl over a saucepan like I did, make sure the water does not touch the bottom of your bowl.)

Whisk milk mixture constantly. This is very important--you don't want scrambled eggs! Once the milk mixture has reached the consistency of heavy cream (this takes about 30-40 minutes... if you stir briefly with a wooden spoon and draw your finger across the back, the trail will remain when it's ready; it was about 175 degrees fahrenheit on the candy thermometer), pour through a mesh strainer into a freezer-safe container. Immediately transfer your container to an ice water bath to quickly cool your custard and stir in your vanilla extract.

Move your custard to the freezer and check every half hour. When a frozen crust begins to form, thoroughly blend with an immersion blender or electric whisk. Replace cover and return to the freezer. Continue this process another 3 times to make sure ice crystals are as small as possible.

Note: If you don't have an immersion blender or electric whisk, make sure your freezer container is big enough to permit you to use your electric mixer. This procedure was learned by reading this article at David Lebovitz.

Variation ideas:

  1. Use other flavorings such as maple, raspberry or almond extract.
  2. Add stir-ins after your final blend, such as mini milk or white chocolate chips, chopped fresh or dried fruit, or nuts.
  3. As your custard cooks, infuse your milk mixture with cinnamon or even teas. I plan to try a chai tea-flavored ice cream in the future--doesn't that sound delish?

This is my entry to You Scream, I Scream, We All Scream for Frozen Desserts hosted by Mike's Table. Visit the roundup to see an array of fantastic recipes.


Joy @ Joy Of Desserts said...

Great for those who have dietary restrictions. If you are interested in entering your ice cream recipes in another round up, feel free to join mine too. All the details are on my blog. You can click on the sidebar or scroll down to the June 5th post.

Kathy said... cream! I will have to try this simple version when our move is completed. What kind of milk did you use? I'm assuming you get a richer flavor and maybe smoother texture as the fat content increases, right? Did you go with whole milk?

Amanda said...

Hi, Joy! Thanks for alerting me to your event--I plan to make a couple more ice creams, so I think I'll have something unique to submit to your event!

Kathy--I suspect you're right about the fat content. I used regular whole milk because I didn't want to go out & buy heavy cream. I'll admit it makes a rather THIN creme anglaise, and would certainly be better using half and half.

Anonymous said...

Wow! This looks terrific. I'm sure it tastes the way it looks, too. ;-)


Amanda said...

Thanks, Paz. I'll admit that it was delish--I ate the last of it yesterday. This is definitely going to be a regular fixture this summer. I can't wait to try the next batch!

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