…Or, quite simply, the best ice cream you’ve never had.
A little backstory first, though. When my great-uncle passed away about two years ago, my source for homemade ice-cream also disappeared. While I had only known him (and the superiority of homemade ice-cream) for about two years, I had come to love his ice cream creations. When I graduated a few weeks ago, I was reminiscing with my great-aunt about how much I loved that — and how much I’d love to make my own. The next week — lo and behold! — my great-aunt surprised me with his ice cream maker … and thus began the start of my new obsession.
Now, I know that I was just posting about how much I needed more healthy salads in my life (like this Tzatziki Dressing on a Chicken Gyro Salad) and — honesty hour alert — it’s because I’ve been eating so much ice cream. But hey! It all balances out, right?
To be totally honest though… I’m not sure I would care. It’s just that good. When I gave some for my roommate, she just about started crying* and said, “why are you such an awesome roommate?!” No joke — this actually happened. *I may or may not be exaggerating about the crying.
You just can’t get wrong with coffee+chocolate+amaretto. Amiright?
Three notes about this recipe:
One: it’s made with a custard which looks/sounds WAY more intimidating than it is. Once you make one, you won’t think twice about having to make them again. The custard is the key part of what makes this ice cream so satisfyingly smooth and thick especially if you don’t use xantham gum.
Two: I recently bought this xantham gum because I think it’s the secret ingredient to making frappaccinos at home (it’s one of the main ingredients on the bottles of the frappaccino base). It’s expensive, but will last you forever because you only use a tiny amount. It works as a binder in cold liquids and in gluten free baking. In ice-cream it prevents crystals from forming when its put in the freezer and results in a smoother texture. It’s absolutely optional though, but I thought I would explain why I was using it! *stay tuned for a frappaccino copycat recipe!
Three: the Amaretto adds great depth of flavor, and helps keep the ice cream from freezing into a solid block of ice in the freezer for easier scooping later on. And re-scooping. And re-re-scooping because it’s so amazing. You can absolutely use other types of liquor, or omit it all together. I don’t think there’s enough to make anyone feel anything.
UPDATE: I made this again, substituting Oreos for the brownie and was equally enthralled with the result. Let me know what you think!
- 1.5 cups whole milk
- 1.5 cups heavy cream
- 3 tbs espresso powder
- 4 large egg yolks
- ¾ cup sugar
- pinch of salt
- ¼ tsp xanthan gum (opt.)
- ¾ cup chocolate chips
- 4" square brownie, or about 10 oreos cut into small pieces.
- ¼ cup amaretto
- In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, combine the milks and espresso powder. Stirring occasionally, bring to a light simmer over medium heat and immediately remove from heat.
- In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar, salt, and xanthan gum until it's a pale yellow thick and creamy mixture.
- Whisk in about half of the hot milk mixture. This becomes the custard.
- Transfer the custard into the remaining hot milk mixture in the saucepan.
- Heat the custard/milk to 170 degrees, stirring constantly.
- Remove from heat, transfer to a bowl, and place in the refrigerator until completely cooled.*
- Freeze the custard in the ice-cream maker according to the maker's directions.
- While the custard is freezing, chop the brownie or oreos up.
- When the custard is nearly done being frozen, pour in the amaretto and continue to churn until it reaches a thick "soft serve" or gelato-like texture.
- Pour into container, and stir in the chocolate chips and brownie/oreo bits into the soft ice-cream and immediately place the ice-cream in the freezer for at least 2 hours.
Be prepared to let the ice cream thaw for a few minutes before serving it, as it will be harder than store-bought ice cream (even with the amaretto).
To me, nothing says ice cream quite like a good ragtime. And this is one of my favorite pieces of ragtime… played by the master Scott Joplin himself. This isn’t a recording of him playing it in the traditional sense. Rather, he played this on a player piano with the “record” setting on (ie, holes were punched in a scrolling roll as he was playing). To play, someone can simply place the scroll in the piano and let it do it’s thing for an exact replica of how Scott Joplin would’ve wanted it to sound. For more information on how crazy awesome player pianos are, click here.
Note: Making a purchase off of one of the links will result in me making an extremely small commission rate from Amazon. Most websites do the same thing — I just wanted to give you a heads up! I only link to things that I actually use and recommend. I figured if I’m going to link to it anyways, I might as well make a few pennies (literally) from it.