The passing Summer in Sydney has not felt like Summer at all. With only a couple of days hitting the 30C mark, it was a pathetic Summer to say the least. Yes, we’d probably still be complaining if we had our stinking hot 40+ days, but at least we’d have an excuse to go to the beach. Regardless of having a proper Summer or not, at least you are able to have ice cream during any kind of weather and nothing beats homemade ice cream as you can make any flavour you want.
I’ve had an ice cream machine many years ago and can understand the trepidation one would go through making it from scratch but it’s a rewarding experience if you get it right. Over cook the custard and you’ll find yourself with some sweet, flavoursome scrambled eggs and no one wants that.
However, I have made ice cream without a machine before and it worked a treat but have tried the same recipe with another flavour and I didn’t enjoy it so much. I found it extremely creamy and left a fatty mouth-feel when I was eating it. Don’t get me wrong, I think the recipe works well for those who are timid about making custard-base ice creams, just don’t have time, or those who don’t own an ice cream machine. The recipe was good for the Vietnamese coffee ice cream because it pretty much was the ice cream version of the drink but it’s not the ice cream I’ve been used to when it comes to homemade ice cream.
Recently, I received a Cuisinart ice cream machine to play around with, thanks to Brad from Kitchenware Direct. The machine is straight forward to use, all you need to do is chill the canister in the freezer for at least 24 hours. Then when it comes to making the ice cream, you just place the canister on the dock, mixing paddle in the canister, lid on top and pour the chilled ice cream mixture down the chute. 20 minutes later and Hey Presto! you’ll have ice cream.
I know this is a little thing and it plays no function to the ice cream making process but I really liked how there’s a cord tying thing attached to it. Hands up if you hate cords lying around due to appliances or having to tie them up with those wire cable ties things. All appliances should have this cable tying thing as it would make storing appliances less cluttered.
Feeling inspired after having a wonderful dessert from Zest last year, I had the intention of re-creating popcorn ice cream at home. And what goes with popcorn? Why caramel of course! But I thought, why not make salted caramel instead because we all know salted caramel makes everything better..
It was a simple matter of infusing the popcorn flavour into the milk and cream for the custard; which made the ice cream have a nice buttery popcorn taste. This method could be used for just about any flavour infusion you want. Oooooo.. I just thought of donut flavour ice cream! You get the idea.
I had two attempts at incorporating the salted caramel into the ice cream. The first time I used the salted butter caramel sauce from David Lebovitz’s The Perfect Scoop and tried drizzling it into the freshly churned ice cream but that stuffed it up a little; it temporarily melted and retarded the chilling process of the ice cream. The second time was using (salted) dulce de leche that I made in a can by pressure cooking it and placing it into the ice cream. That seemed to work although I wasn’t too happy with it as I placed some big chunks when I should’ve placed smaller ones in instead. These caramel chunks were slightly chewy in the ice cream. I should have listened to Karen and made a praline and scattered little pieces in the ice cream for a gooey salted caramel within my ice cream; like what David Lebovitz has done on his blog.
Now thanks to the lovely people at Kitchenware Direct, one lucky reader has the chance of winning a Cuisinart 1.5L ice cream machine, with a choice of 7 colours to choose from. All you have to do is tell me what ice cream flavour you would make and what colour ice cream machine you would like (please keep in mind that this does not apply to the stainless brushed or metallic red machines). This competition is open to Australian residents only and ends at 11:59PM (AEST) on the 4th April 2012.
Congratulations to Peter on winning yourself an ice cream machine. I’m curious about how you’d incorporate ouzo into the ice cream, knowing how it would behave, but if you need a taste tester, please let me know!
Adapted from The Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz
Makes 1L (about 1 quart)
Popcorn ice cream
1/4 cup corn kernels
(Alternatively, use 50g (buttered, optional) popcorn instead)
1 1/2 cup full cream milk
1 1/2 cup thickened cream
6 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
1 can of sweetened condensed milk
2 tsp salt
For the ice cream
- Melt butter in a 2L saucepan over medium heat
- Add popcorn and cover
- Shake saucepan regularly until popping ceases
- Remove from heat and discard any unpopped kernels or burnt popcorn
- Warm the milk, cream and popcorn in another saucepan over medium heat for 5-10 minutes
- Remove from heat and allow popcorn to infuse for at least 15 minutes
- Whisk egg yolks and sugar together until light and fluffy
- Strain the popcorn milk mixture into the egg yolk, stirring to lighten the egg yolks
- Place the mixture back into the saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly and scrapping the bottom as you stir until the mixture thickens and coats the back of a spatula (about 10 minutes)
- Place mixture over an ice bath, stirring constantly until the mixture cools
- Chill the mixture thoroughly in the refrigerator for 2 hours or overnight
- Freeze the mixture in ice cream machine for about 20 minutes according to manufacturer’s instructions
- Drizzle or place small chunks of the salted caramel through the ice cream
- Freeze for at least 1 hour to firm up before serving
For the salted caramel
- Place the can in a saucepan and submerge completely under water
- Boil for 1.5 hours (covered); checking ever 30mins on the water level and top up if needed
- Alternatively, boil the can fully submerged in a pressure cooker for 30mins OR buy a can of ready-made caramel
- Heat 1/4 cup of caramel with salt over medium heat, stirring until salt dissolves completely
- Cool caramel slightly before incorporating into ice cream