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Thursday, June 20, 2013

It's Time For Ice Cream

Those 90 degree temps tempt me to think about ice cream.  As I was perusing the cooking section of New Uses, I found a Cuisinart ice cream maker for....drum roll please.....$17!!!   They retail for $55!!   It appeared brand new!!!  So I think to myself...hmmm..probably doesn't work.  New Uses has a 7 day return policy so I walked out with my ice cream maker and into the alien and blissful world of home-made ice cream.  But where to start?  There are thousands of recipes on line.  My go to blog for all things dessert is Anna's Cookie Madness.  She suggested this Vanilla Gelato recipe.  I liked that it was a simple, straightforward  recipe.  Plus, if my new, used machine didn't work, I wouldn't have wasted too many ingredients.
My first attempt was a success!!  **No scrambled eggs!!!

The recipe below is supposed to have a vanilla bean.  I don't normally have vanilla beans. I omitted it and the vanilla extract and replaced the vanilla with 1 teaspoon banana extract.  I tasted the custard after it was cooked, but before it morphed into ice cream .  Thought I'd gone to heaven!!

You need to try this recipe!!!  Also, pour your favorite chocolate sauce over the banana flavored ice cream.  You won't be disappointed.  One thing about the texture though.  Because it uses more milk than cream, it comes out a little less creamy than ice cream, but not too icy for me (there is a price to be paid for everything and less fat is no exception).  Once it melts a bit, you will know what gelato heaven is!

My new used ice cream maker and banana gelato!!
Adapted from Cookie Madness
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 pinch of salt-I used 1/8 teaspoon
  • 1 teaspoon banana extract
  1. In a mixing bowl, beat the egg yolks with the sugar and salt until they become pale yellow.  Set aside
  2. In a saucepan, combine the milk and cream. Heat over medium heat, stirring often, until mixture is 170 degrees F (just hot and no bubbles at all yet). 
  3. Slowly pour about half the hot milk mixture into the egg mixture, whisking constantly, then pour it all back into the saucepan. Heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until mixture reaches 170-175 degrees F or until the mix coats the back of the wooden spoon and sticks.  **DO NOT LET IT BOIL or you will get scrambled eggs. 
  4. Remove from heat and pour into a bowl that has a strainer on top of it (to catch any scrambled eggs). Then stir in the banana extract.
  5. Let cool slightly at room temperature and then chill thoroughly (at least several hours. I chilled mine over night).
  6. Pour into ice cream maker and churn according to manufacturer’s directions. Freeze for another hour or so before serving.
  7. Tips:  A:  Have a clean bowl and strainer ready for the hot custard so you don't have to frantically yell at your husband, wife, housemate, or kids to get a bowl and a strainer at the last minute.  B:  To easily separate the egg yolks, crack them and then pour into your clean hands.  Let the whites slip out between your fingers into a bowl if you want to use them for something else later. Works every time.  C: Cover the custard with plastic wrap before you refrigerate it so that it touches the custard. That way no "skin" will develop.  D:  Serious Eats has good info. on ice cream and gelato and the science of ice crystals and other issues you may have with some recipes.