March 9, 2010

Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

For those of you wondering what I was up to yesterday:

Well, finally at 9:30 last night I had a finished Vanilla Bean Ice Cream.  It was fabulous.... or so the Mart and Ryan pronounced.  The two younger ones were already in bed and I was collapsed on the couch.  This ice cream stuff is hard work!  When you read the manuals,  they tell you that if you keep the canister in the freezer, you can have ice cream anytime you want it in less then an hour.  Lies, I tell you!  :)  I decided yesterday morning that I would make Vanilla Bean.  At 1:30 I started it.  At about 4 in finally went into the refrigerator. (The mixture needs to be refrigerated before it goes into the ice cream machine, otherwise it will not firm up.)  The suggestion was to refrigerate it overnight. (Maybe I should have read the instructions in greater detail.)  Instead, I took mine out about 4 hours later.  I must tell you though, it was worth it.  I had a few small spoonfuls and it was fantastic.  Very decadent.  What I have noticed is that homemade ice cream is not something you tuck into and eat a huge bowl.  A small scoop or two is plenty.  Even the boys said so.  I used a recipe from the ice cream guru, David Lebovitz.  I think we need to move onto frozen yogurt now!

Vanilla Bean Ice Cream (adapted from David Lebovitz)

1 1/2 cup milk
pinch of salt
3/4 cup sugar(scant)
1 vanilla bean, split 
2 cups heavy cream
5 egg yolks
1  tsp vanilla

Heat milk and sugar on low in saucepan. Scrape seeds from vanilla bean and place in milk mixture alone with the pod. Cover and remove from heat and allow to infuse for an hour.

After the hour, set up ice bath to make ice cream. In large bowl, place ice and water.  On top, place 2 quart bowl. Set strainer over smaller bowl and pour cream through. In separate bowl, mix egg yolks. Rewarm milk and slowly pour milk into yolks, mixing continually.  Put back in pan and reheat(stirring constantly) until custard thickens (enough to coat back of spatula). Pour mixture through strainer into cream. Stir over the ice bath until cool and then refrigerate(preferably overnight). *Because I couldn't wait that long, I put bowl over ice bath in refrigerator for 2 hours, then took out ice bath and left bowl in refrigerator for 2 more hours. Very chilled!

Now the fun part! Remove the vanilla bean and place in ice cream maker according to manufacturer's instructions.   Some work, yes....but oh so worth it!! :)  

The finished product, still in the ice cream maker.  I would like to say I have a beautiful picture in a pretty bowl, but the boys got into it before I had a chance!

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