You may never eat store bought again.
1-1/2 cups pecans
2 Tbs unsalted butter
2 Tbs plus 2/3 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
1-1/2 cups heavy cream
1-1/2 cups whole milk
4 egg yolks
pinch of sat
1 tsp vanilla extract
Place the pecans in a food processor and pulse 6 to 8 times, just until they are coarsely chopped.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a frying pan over medium heat, melt the butter. Add half the chopped pecans and toast them, stirring constantly, until fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes. Sprinkle the 2 Tbs brown sugar over the pecans and cook, stirring constantly, until the sugar melts and forms a glaze. Scrape the pecans and all the glaze onto the parchment-lined baking sheet and spread them out in a single layer. Let cool to room temperature.
Place the remaining pecans in a dry saucepan over medium-low heat and toast them, stirring constantly, until golden and fragrant, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the cream, milk and 2/3 cup of brown sugar. Warm the mixture, stirring occasionally, until the sugar is dissolved and steam begins to rise from the surface, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove from the heat and let the mixture steep for 10-15 minutes.
In a bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and salt until blended. Whisk in 1/2 cup of the pecan cream until smooth and blended, then pour the egg mixture back into the pan. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring slowly and continuously with a spatula, until the custard thickens and reaches 175 degrees. Do not allow the custard to boil.
Pour the custard through a fine-mesh sieve set over a clean bowl; discard the pecans. Nestle the bowl in a larger bowl filled with ice and cold water and cool the custard to room temperature, stirring occasionally. Refrigerate until well chilled, at least 2 hours.
Stir the vanilla into the custard. Freeze in the ice cream maker. At the end of the freezing stage add the buttered pecans just until blended. Transfer ice cream to freezer safe container and chill until firm, at least 2 hours.
Crystallized Ginger Ice Cream
2 cups whole milk
4 egg yolks
1 cup sugar
1/8 tsp salt
2 cups heavy cream, chilled
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup crystallized ginger, chopped
In a saucepan over medium heat, brink the milk to a simmer. Remove from the heat and set aside.
In the top pan of a double broiler off the heat, whisk the egg yolks with the sugar and salt until pale yellow, 3 to 4 minutes. Gradually add the hot milk, whisking constantly until fully incorporated. Set the top pan over but not touching simmering water in the bottom pan and cook, stirring slowly and continuously with a wooden spoon until the custard thickens and reaches a temperature of 175 degrees. Do not boil. Remove from the heat and stir in the cream and vanilla.
Pour the custard through a fine-mesh sieve set over a clean bowl and refrigerate for 1 hour.
Freeze in an ice cream maker. When half frozen, stir in the chopped crystallized ginger and complete the freezing process. Transfer to freezer safe container and freeze until firm, at least 2 hours.
Mexican Chocolate Ice Cream
I made two different recipes – the first (below) used Mexican Chocolate in it, the second was a base chocolate recipe with the spices added in. I liked the first better – but it’s sometimes hard to find Mexican chocolate, and the recipe becomes pretty expensive once you add it. But the texture of the ice cream is better than when you add cayenne pepper and cinnamon to a base chocolate. So if you like the heat of a spicy chocolate, this recipe is for you.
1/2 vanilla bean
11 oz. Mexican chocolate (3-1/2 disks; preferably Ibarra), coarsely chopped
3-3/4 cups half-and-half
Scant 1/4 teaspoon salt
Halve vanilla bean lengthwise and scrape seeds into a 3-quart heavy saucepan. Add chocolate and half-and-half and bring to a boil over moderate heat, whisking. Remove from heat.
Lightly beat eggs with salt in a bowl, then add hot chocolate mixture in a slow stream, whisking. Transfer custard to cleaned saucepan and cook over moderately low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until custard registers 175 on thermometer, 1 to 5 minutes. Immediately pour through a fine-mesh sieve into a metal bowl. Put bowl into a larger bowl of ice and cold water to cool, stirring occasionally.
Freeze custard in ice cream maker. Transfer to freezer safe container and freeze until hardened, at least two hours.
Buttermilk Ice Cream
smittenkitchen.com, adapted from Claudia Fleming’s The Last Course
2 cups heavy cream
1-1/4 cup sugar
12 large egg yolks
2 cups buttermilk
2 teaspoons vanilla or half a vanilla bean, scraped and simmered with the cream
pinch of salt
In a large, heavy saucepan, combine the heavy cream and one cup of the sugar and bring to a simmer over medium heat.
In a large bowl, whisk egg yolks and remaining 1/4 cup of sugar.
Remove the cream mixture from the heat and drizzle a small amount into the yolks, slowly, and whisking constantly to keep the eggs from curdling. Do this a few more times to warm up the yolks before pouring the yolk mixture back into the cream, whisking constantly.
Cook over low heat until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon and registers 175 on thermometer. Strain the mixture and whisk in the buttermilk, vanilla and salt. Cool completely and freeze in ice cream maker.
I chose this recipe in the hopes that I could put to use some of the leftover lemons from the lemon pound cake baking. I was a bit disappointed in the results, and will likely try out some other lemon ice cream recipes, but if you like lemon, and a not-too-sweet cream, this one is worth a shot.
1 cup half-and-half
1 cup heavy cream
3/4 cup sugar
6 egg yolks
1 cup creme fraiche or heavy cream
In a non-aluminum saucepan, combine the half-and-half and cream. Using a vegetable peeler, remove the zest of 1 lemon in long strips. This didn’t work for me, I ended up peeling the lemon and removing as much of the white pith as possible. Add to cream mixture. Place over medium heat and bring just to a simmer.
Meanwhile, grate the zest from the remaining two lemons. In a food processor, combine the sugar and grated lemon zest and process until well mixed. In a bowl, combine the egg yolks and lemon sugar. Whisk until pale and smooth. Slowly whisk in the hot cream, then return the mixture to the saucepan and place over medium-low heat. Cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the mixture visibly thickens and coats the spoon, about 4 minutes. Do not allow it to boil or it will curdle.
Remove from the heat and stir for 1 minute. Let cool for 15 minutes, then whisk in the creme fraiche. Cover and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, about 8 hours.
Strain the mixture into an ice cream maker and freeze. Store in freezer safe container, and freeze until hardened, about 1 hour.
I’ll post the final ice cream recipe installment later this week.