I recently splurged on the ice cream maker of my dreams, which immediately became my new favorite toy. I’ve been selling my unwanted clothes on eBay and buying kitchen supplies with the extra cash, which is a pretty good representation of how my interests have changed since I started this blog. (My clothes still fit, if that’s what you’re wondering!)
Remember my spearmint from a couple of months back? The spearmint makes its recipe début today along with my first ice cream recipe, of which there will be many more. Mint lends such a refreshing quality to cool drinks and frozen treats that it seemed the perfect choice for ice cream. When I found a recipe for mint ice cream in my mom’s May 2010 issue of Cooking Light, I knew I had to try it.
I made several adjustments to the magazine’s instructions and ended up with delicately flavored, light mint ice cream. My recipe calls for 2% milk, turbinado sugar, and only two egg yolks, compared to more typical recipes that use tons of cream, cups and cups of sugar, and six eggs.
The end result is light and slightly icy like sorbet, but as sweet and satisfying as gelato. The mint flavor tastes like the real deal, because it is. For once, I recommend against topping this dessert with chocolate. It overwhelms the flavor.
- 2 cups 2% milk
- 1 cup half-and-half
- 20 fresh mint leaves
- ¾ cups turbinado (raw) sugar
- dash of salt
- 2 large egg yolks
- 1 teaspoon real vanilla extract
- Combine milk, half-and-half and mint leaves in a medium sized, heavy sauce pan or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Heat until tiny bubbles form around the edge (which should be about 180 degrees). Do not let it boil!
- Remove from heat, cover and let stand for ten minutes. That gives the mint flavor time to steep.
- Uncover it and pour the mixture through a colander into a medium bowl. Press the mint leaves slightly with a big spoon to get all the flavor. Discard the leaves, and pour the liquid back into your pan.
- In a new bowl, combine sugar, salt and egg yolks. Stir with a whisk until the mixture is pale.
- Gradually add half of the milk mixture to the egg mixture, while stirring constantly with a whisk.
- Pour the egg/milk mixture back into the pan with the rest of the milk.
- Cook over medium-low heat for about two minutes (or to 160 degrees), stirring constantly.
- Pour the mixture into a bowl. Stir in the vanilla extract.
- Place the bowl in the fridge until the mixture cools completely, stirring occasionally.
- Pour the mixture into your ice cream maker and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
- If you’d like the ice cream to harden up a little more, freeze it for a couple of hours.
- Adapted from Cooking Light.
- I originally advised adding a couple of tablespoons of vodka to the cream mixture per David Lebovitz's suggestion, but it turns out you don't need any in this recipe. It's scoopable straight from the freezer, without any extra help from alcohol.
- Yields roughly 1 quart of frozen ice cream.
The magazine says that this basic, light custard recipe tastes great with other flavors, like ginger, cinnamon or coconut. I can’t wait to try the rest!