It’s hot. Really hot.
We’ve been trapped under an enormous “heat dome” (where do they come up with these ridiculous terms? Sounds like the plot of a disaster movie.). The city feels dirtier than usual. People are cranky and annoying. My hair looks terrible, and my brain is fried (hence the lame title for this post. I spent awhile trying to think of a catchy one. Just can’t do it).
It’s time for ice cream.
I’ve got a bunch of stuff that I’ve bookmarked to bake, but I don’t really feel like turning on the oven. Ice cream has been the way to go over the last couple of weeks, and I added a couple new flavors to my repertoire.
First up was coffee ice cream. Chester’s been requesting it for awhile, but it seems like all of the recipes that I was finding called for using instant coffee or steeping whole coffee beans in the custard mixture. Instant coffee doesn’t really seem like it belongs in homemade ice cream, and I didn’t want to buy whole beans just for this recipe. Then, I came across this version from “Not Eating Out In New York,” which called for “the strongest [fresh] coffee that you’ve ever made in your life.”
We make a pot of coffee every morning, so I just reserved some of that. It isn’t strong, so I added more than what the recipe calls for (probably about 1 ½ cups total) until the base didn’t taste like straight up half-and-half anymore. It did turn out a tad on the icy side, though—I’m not sure if the extra coffee threw of the ratios in the recipe or maybe the mixture was still a bit warm when I put in the ice cream maker. Next time, I might try to adjust the measurements for the cream and milk accordingly, and hopefully that will help it retain some of it’s custardiness (not a word, I know). Although I’m not a big fan of coffee ice cream, I enjoyed this one as it was reminiscent of the Starbucks Java Chip flavor (minus the chips), which used to love. Chester likes his ice cream plain, but next time, I’m making a batch for me that has the dark chocolate chips, and then it will be just like it!
Fresh Coffee Ice Cream
- 1 ½ cups heavy cream
- 1 ½ cups milk
- 3 egg yolks
- 2 whole eggs
- ¾ cup sugar
- ½ cup of the strongest coffee you’ve ever made in your life
- Dark chocolate chunks (optional)
What to do
- Blend yolks, whole eggs and sugar in a bowl with a whisk.
- Heat milk, cream, and coffee in a saucepan until it’s near boiling. Remove from heat.
- Slowly, pour a cup of the hot milk/cream mixture into the egg mixture and beat rapidly with a whisk (this helps keep the eggs from completely scrambling when you pour them into the mix in the next step).
- Pour egg mixture back into saucepan with the milk/cream mixture. Heat at medium low, and stir constantly until the mixture becomes thick enough to coast the back of a spoon. Remove from heat.
- Pour mixture into a bowl, and cover with plastic wrap (place the wrap right on the surface of the ice cream to keep the mixture from getting a skin on it). Chill in the refrigerator overnight (or at least a few hours, until completely cool).
- Pour into ice cream maker and freeze for 30 minutes (or whatever your ice cream maker instructions tell you to do). If using the dark chocolate chunks, add to mixture about five minutes before it’s done freezing.
- Transfer to a container (you’ll get about a quart out of this) and put in freezer. Let freeze a few hours before serving.
Next time around, I made my favorite—chocolate peanut butter. This is the second David Lebovitz recipe that I tried (I also made his vanilla ice cream to go with these cookies). I have decided that he’s an ice cream genius. This was the best chocolate peanut butter ice cream I’ve had ever. Period. End of story.
It’s not a custard-based recipe—no eggs—but the peanut butter more than makes up for that. Although some of the recipes that I read said not to use natural peanut butter, I did without any problems. I used my favorite brand of course—Jif—and that doesn’t have as much oil in it as some of the other natural varieties do, so the mix still held together well.
About five minutes before the ice cream was done mixing, I added the peanut butter patties to the mix. You can never have too much PB, and the ice cold chunks of it are my favorite part of this ice cream flavor. I can’t even describe how rich this is. You should make it ASAP.
Chocolate Peanut Butter Ice Cream
From the Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz
- 2 cups half-and-half
- ¼ cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
- ½ cup sugar
- Pinch of salt
- ½ cup smooth peanut butter
Peanut Butter Patties
- 6 tablespoons peanut butter
- 2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
What to do: Ice Cream
- Whisk half-and-half, cocoa, sugar and salt in a saucepan. Heat the mixture, stirring often, to a full boil.
- Remove from heat, whisk in peanut butter until well blended.
- Chill mixture in the refrigerator overnight (or at least until fully cool) and freeze in ice cream maker. If you are using the peanut butter patties (or any mix-ins for that matter), add them to the mixture about five minutes before it’s done churning.
- Transfer to container (makes about a quart) and put in freezer.
What to do: Peanut Butter Patties
- Mix peanut butter and sugar together in a small bowl.
- Line a plate with plastic wrap. Drop ½ tablespoons of peanut butter on to the plastic.
- Freeze the patties.
It looks like we’re going to be trapped “under the dome” (Okay, now I remember that there there was definitely a Steven King book with that title not to long ago. It’s being made into a movie. Plot idea taken) through this weekend at least. What to make next? Suggestions?
Stay cool, friends. Make yourself some ice cream. Or, invite yourself to your neighbor’s pool. Or, just stay home with your head in the freezer. Whatever floats your boat. Oh, and remember, it’s not the heat, it’s the humidity (Side note: I have never understood this expression. That, and “at least it’s a dry heat.” But, people seem to say them frequently when it’s hot. Some kind of weird coping mechanism, I guess).