I finally let Michael eat the last scoop of ice cream this week. Mid August, I warned him I needed one scoop to photograph for the blog and he reluctantly put the tub back in the freezer and went for vanilla instead. He reminded me a few times that I needed to take photos so he could eat it, and I reminded him that I needed good light for a good ice cream photo. I also needed to be home before 7 with nothing else to do on a weeknight to make this happen. August was a busy month.
I tried a new recipe from The Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz. I think he is currently traveling around San Francisco and I’m resisting the urge to stalk him. I might have to visit Smitten Ice Cream soon though because he gave it a pretty good review on his blog… ice cream via liquid nitrogen. hmm.
I chose real mint ice cream. Why would I do such a thing you ask? Well, I have a garden now… you could say I’m developing a green thumb, and I’m growing mint. Mint is an easy plant even if you have a black thumb. Just beware as it is likely to take over areas of your garden unless confined to a pot. My mint is weird. It has smaller leaves and when it gets tall the leaves start to turn purple (this may mean my window box is too small). I used it anyways, even some of the purple, and it turned into a very refreshing ice cream. I added chocolate chips of course because mint needs the best flavor companion possible and I was a bit nervous about the strong fresh mint taste. If all else failed, at least the would be chocolate.
I liked it, I think Michael liked it too. He ate most of it anyways with bits of leftover cake that I didn’t make into cake pops. My preference is still peppermint extract flavored ice cream, but this one was nice for a change, and nice to be able to use something I’ve grown in a recipe.
Mint Ice Cream
The Perfect Scoop, David Lebovitz
1 C whole milk
1/4 C sugar
2 C heavy cream
5 large egg yolks
2 C fresh packed mint leaves
1 C roughly chopped chocolate (mini chocolate chips work well too) my addition
Heat milk, sugar, and 1 C cream in a heavy bottom saucepan. Add the mint leaves and steep for one hour. This means stir them up and cover with a lid. Go do some sit-ups since you’ll be eating this later, and and strain the mixture through a fine mesh strainer. Make sure you push leaves against the strainer to extract as much liquid as possible. Lebovits says your cream will be a lovely shade of emerald, but mine was barely green. Warm this mix back up on meduim heat.
In another bowl, whisk the egg yolks. Once the milk is warm, slowly add the milk, whisking constantly, to the eggs and then return all of this to the pot and continue to heat until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Stir constantly and try not to let anything burn to the bottom.
In another bowl (more dishes please!) add the remainder of the cream and set the mesh strainer on top (remove leaves). Pour the minty custard through the strainer again to eliminate scrambled eggs in your ice cream and stir into the cream. Place over an ice bath to help cool. Cover and refrigerate overnight or at least four hours. You can add green food coloring now.
Prepare the ice cream according to your machine manufacturer’s recommendations. Be sure you’ve frozen your bowl for as long as required or your ice cream will never get thick. Freeze again for a few hours until it’s scoopable, about 4 hours.
Ice cream takes a while, so it’s best to plan ahead if your’re making it for an event!