Ice Cream Weekend

Last weekend I experimented with my new KitchenAid Ice Cream Maker Attachment and here are the results! Who knew making custard style ice cream was such an involved, and in one case nail biting process!

Inspiration

Living in a more recently gentrified area of Williamsburg Brooklyn there’s all sorts of shops and stores cropping up around me including OddFellows Ice Cream. These guys have been threatening to open up for some time and I was very excited to see them have their grand opening  just last week! I finally got around to heading over there yesterday and tasted their new Oatmeal Cookie Dough flavor and….WOW! I will definitely be going back for more. But I digress! Back to inspiration. Of course seeing all the ice cream around me was one factor. I’d also say that considering how hot its been these days in NYC no wonder i’ve been tempted to get my ice cream on. Lastly, I’d say that I tried it because I like a good challenge. People describe making a custard style ice cream as a bit of a process and not always easy to get right. That sounded right up my alley. Oh and delicious ice cream at the end is always nice too!

The Ice Cream Maker

I’m always in the market for a cool kitchen gadget and I can justify the purchase so long as it gets use at least 3-4 times a year. Let’s face it, cooking is my hobby so sometimes you need to shell out the cash the same way you would for any other hobby. I’ll be honest, I don’t see myself making ice cream every second week. This is more of a few times a year kind of decadent affair so investing in something serious like this Breville Ice Cream Maker was not really an option, yet! I like to do my research when making most purchases so here are the features of the KitchenAid attachment that led me to my purchasing decision:

  1. High reviews (4+ stars on average)
  2. Under $100 (I actually got it for $60 on sale at Overstock.com)
  3. Bowl fits (just!) in my freezer AND therefore takes up minimal space. I actually love this because I actually have space to keep it in the freezer all year long and it takes up no additional cupboard space for the majority of time when it’s not in use! I found conflicting information about the dimensions of the bowl but it looks like Overstock had it right over Amazon in this case.
  4. I already own a Kitchen Aid Mixer so no need for an entire dedicated appliance.
  5. Most importantly – My resident expert home & garden advisor told me that the comparable Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker (which was in the running for my purchase) produced the same (not better) results as the KitchenAid attachment.

Sources & Ingredients

I figured if this was going to be a true ice cream weekend then I needed to double down and try out two recipes. At least this way if one was a flop I’d still have a chance with the next one. The first recipe I tried out was Alton Browns Mint Chip Ice Cream which required some minor adjustments (see recipe below) and the second was the Classic Chocolate Ice Cream recipe from the folks at Bi Rite Creamery. I don’t own their cookbook just yet (although it looks lovely) but they have some of their recipes available for free as part of a sampling of the book.

The Alton Brown recipe is in keeping with many of his other ice cream recipes, meaning that the custard base is basically the same for all ice creams with minor adjustments for the type of flavor you’re trying to create from vanilla to chocolate to mint chip etc. I followed the recipe exactly but was definitely concerned close to the end of the custard creation phase. I think I may have left the custard on the heat for a little too long? The next thing I knew the custard wasn’t quite the smooth consistency it was supposed to be. Did I make mini scrambled egg custard? I’m not sure but at this point I figured there was a 50/50 chance this ice cream was going to be a flop. My attempt at salvaging the recipe involved a little extra whisking and pouring through a fine mesh sieve which I’d seen mentioned as a step in many other ice cream recipes. I crossed my fingers and hoped to create something that still resembled ice cream.

As far as ingredients go I always like to buy the best from what’s available and sometimes I’ll buy things online if what I need isn’t quite within reach. Living in NYC means no car for me. I think in this case the two main things you want to get right are the mint flavorings for the mint chocolate chip ice cream and the unsweetened cocoa for the chocolate ice cream. For the peppermint oil I went with simply organic peppermint flavor based on some of the reviews/comments from the recipe. I know you can get this at Whole Foods and Brooklyn Harvest (my nearest supermarket) had it too. For the unsweetened cocoa I’d heard good things about Dutch process cocoa so I went with Van Cortland brand cocoa. I’ll be honest and say this was a bit of a gamble. I know that Droste is a well known, recommended brand but Van Cortland is all that was available. Next time I need to replenish the cocoa supplies I’ll go with Droste!

The verdict

After some serious churning and post churn freezing over 3 days (I started Friday night) I had some amazing ice cream on my hands! Both ice creams tasted fantastic with a great consistency (see photos) you’d expect from something bought in the store. I will say that it took a little longer (extra day in the freezer) to get the chocolate ice cream to have the type of consistency I was expecting. This might be because the ice cream bowl only had the minimum 1 day to refreeze and perhaps could have used a little longer time churning.

Next time?

What I’m really keen to try out is a philadelphia style strawberry ice cream. It’s going to be interesting to see how the consistency compares to these custard style recipes and it will let me weigh in on the philadelphia (American) style vs custard (French) style ice creams debate.

Also, I’m a softie for anything chocolate so next time I make chocolate ice cream I plan to try out Alton’s Chocolate Ice Cream recipe which has super high reviews on the food network.

Recipe – Mint chocolate chip ice cream (based on Alton Browns Mint Chip Ice Cream)

Ingredients:
3 cups half-and-half
1 cup heavy cream
8 large egg yolks
9 ounces sugar
1 teaspoon peppermint oil (I used simply organic peppermint flavor)
1/2 cup mini semi sweet chocolate chips (such as Nestle)

Directions:
Place the half-and-half and the heavy cream into a medium saucepan, over medium heat. Bring the mixture just to a simmer, stirring occasionally, and remove from the heat.

In a medium mixing bowl whisk the egg yolks until they lighten in color. Gradually add the sugar and whisk to combine. Temper the cream mixture into the eggs and sugar by gradually adding small amounts, until about 1/3 of the cream mixture has been added. Pour in the remainder and return the entire mixture to the saucepan and place over low heat. Continue to cook, stirring frequently, until the mixture thickens slightly and coats the back of a spoon and reaches 170 to 175 degrees F. Pour the mixture through a fine mesh sieve into a container and allow to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes. Add the peppermint oil and stir to combine. Place the mixture into the refrigerator and once it is cool enough not to form condensation on the lid, cover and store for 4 to 8 hours or until it reaches 40 degrees F or below.

Pour the mixture into an ice cream maker and process according to the manufacturers directions. This should take approximately 25 to 35 minutes.

During the last 5 minutes, add the mini chocolate chips. Adding the chips too early in the process may cause them all to sink to the bottom.

Serve as is for soft serve or freeze for another 3 to 4 hours to allow the ice cream to harden.

2 thoughts on “Ice Cream Weekend

  1. Pingback: Strawberry Ice Cream Time | eatyeats

  2. Pingback: Not My Mother’s Shakshuka with Haloumi Cheese | eatyeats

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