Rich Mocha Ice Cream
- 1 cup strong brewed coffee or espresso
- ⅔ cup Dutchprocess cocoa
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 cups heavy cream
Combine coffee, cocoa and sugar in a mixing bowl and whisk until smooth. Add cream and whisk. Refrigerate until cold. Process in ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions. Makes about 1 quart.
There’s really nothing quite as wonderful on a hot summer day as ice cream.
I’m sure psychiatrists could have a field day with that statement, analyzing what it says about childhood, the need for security, reassurance, gratification and all the rest, and they would probably be right on all counts. I would be happy to submit to such an analysis as long as they supplied plenty of ice cream.
This is a great time for ice cream lovers. Long gone are the days when making ice cream was a big production. With today’s countertop electric machines that require no ice or salt, it’s easy to whip up a batch of ice cream on a whim. Recently, I’ve been developing several new ice cream recipes. Some of them have been successful, others not. Here are four that I really like. Two of them involve making a custard, which some find intimidating, but, in truth, all it requires is a little practice. The other two require no cooking at all.
The first is a bourbon praline ice cream made with a custard base and crushed caramelized pecans. It’s a little more involved than the others since it requires making the praline before starting the ice cream. But if you like pralines and the flavor of bourbon, you won’t mind the extra work.
The creole cream cheese ice cream also requires making a custard. Creole cream cheese is available in some markets, but many of us don’t have access to it, so this recipe uses regular cream cheese in conjunction with buttermilk, lemon juice and zest to approximate the flavor of the classic.
The mocha ice cream is a snap to make, and it will reward you with a rich and intensely flavored treat. If you like key lime pie (and who doesn’t!), the key lime ice cream will be a favorite. Although key lime pie is often topped with whipped cream, it was originally made with a meringue. This ice cream pays homage to both styles by incorporating beaten egg whites and whipped cream.
Our home freezers are really too cold for storing ice cream, so these need to soften a bit before serving. You can put them in the refrigerator before you sit down to dinner or leave them on the countertop for a bit, maybe 5 to 10 minutes, depending on your freezer and the ambient room temperature.
If you can brew a cup of coffee, you can make this recipe for mocha ice cream, even if you’ve never made ice cream in your life. For the best result, use strong coffee made from dark roast beans and Dutch process cocoa (sometimes labelled “Dutched”), which is lower in acidity and darker than regular cocoa.
Creole Cream Cheese Ice Cream
- 4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
- 2 cups cultured buttermilk
- 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
- 1½ cups whole milk
- 8 egg yolks
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
Place cream cheese, buttermilk, lemon juice and lemon zest in a mixing bowl. Heat milk in a heavy sauce pan to just below a boil. In another mixing bowl, beat egg yolks and sugar until light. Slowly add hot milk to egg yolks, a little at a time, while whisking constantly. Return mixture to sauce pan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly with a high-heat silicone spatula (or wooden spoon) until thickened. The mixture will coat the back of the spatula when ready.
Strain mixture through a fine mesh strainer into mixing bowl containing cream cheese, buttermilk, lemon juice and zest. Whisk until smooth. Cool completely, then refrigerate until cold. Process in ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions. Makes about 1 quart.
Key Lime Ice Cream
- 1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
- 1 cup freshly squeezed key lime juice
- 2 cups half-and-half
- 4 egg whites
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- ½ pint heavy cream
- 2 teaspoons powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon grated key lime zest
Combine sweetened condensed milk and lime juice in a bowl and whisk to combine. Add half-and-half and whisk until smooth. Refrigerate until cold.
Beat egg whites until thickened, add granulated sugar and beat until stiff. Fold into condensed milk mixture and freeze in ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions. Makes about 1 quart.
Whip heavy cream with powdered sugar until thickened. Serve scoops of ice cream topped with softly whipped cream sprinkled with key lime zest.
Bourbon Praline Ice Cream
For crushed praline
- ⅔ cup granulated sugar
- ⅓ cup water
- ⅔ cup chopped pecans
For ice cream
- 3½ cups whole milk
- 8 egg yolks
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons bourbon
- crushed praline
Lightly butter a baking sheet. In a heavy sauce pan over medium heat, cook sugar and water until it becomes a light caramel color. Add pecans and cook until color changes to dark amber. Using a metal spatula or spoon, turn praline out onto greased baking sheet and spread to a thin layer. (Careful, because it will be very hot!) Cool completely. When cool, break into pieces and pulverize in a food processor or place in a plastic bag and crush with a rolling pin or wooden mallet.
Heat milk in a heavy sauce pan to just below a boil. In a mixing bowl, beat egg yolks and sugar until light. Slowly add hot milk to egg yolks, a little at a time, while whisking constantly. Return mixture to sauce pan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly with a high-heat silicone spatula (or wooden spoon) until thickened. The mixture will coat the back of the spatula when ready.
Strain mixture through a fine mesh strainer into a mixing bowl. Add vanilla, bourbon and crushed praline and whisk to combine. Place bowl in a container of ice and water and stir until cool. Refrigerate until cold, then process in ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions. Makes about 1 quart.