Ice Cream Base
This simple, classic ice cream base can be used to create numerous flavors of ice cream, or can be made and eaten on its own.
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- 2 cups heavy whipping cream
- 2 cups skim milk
- 1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
- 1½ cups sugar
- 8 egg yolks
- 1 teaspoon gelatin powder, bloomed (sprinkled, gently stirred, and dissolved) in ¼ cup hot water
- Zest of 1 lemon, finely grated (preferably with a microplane)
- ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
- Prepare an ice bath by setting an empty mixing bowl within a larger bowl filled with ice water. Place in the refrigerator to stay cold during the next few steps.
- In a saucepot, combine cream, skim milk, condensed milk, and sugar. Over medium-low heat, slowly bring to a simmer.
- Place egg yolks in a heatproof mixing bowl. Keeping the cream mixture at a simmer, ladle 1½ cups of hot cream mixture over yolks as you whisk steadily. Be sure to add the liquid quite slowly so as to not curdle the yolks.
- Lower heat on the remaining cream mixture and add yolk mixture, along with bloomed gelatin. Whisk vigorously to combine. Add lemon zest and salt. Whisk to combine.
- Stir constantly with a wooden spoon or heatproof spatula, until mixture thickens slightly and holds a line when you run your finger across the moistened spoon.
- Remove ice bath from refrigerator and pour the hot cream mixture into the empty mixing bowl. Stir steadily until the mixture has cooled to room temperature.
- Mix in additional flavors as desired and freeze. Store in the freezer for at least 2 hours (and preferably overnight) before serving. Alternatively, you may use a home camping-style or foam cooler to freeze ice cream. Place ice cream inside, and top with a block of dry ice followed by a sheet of cardboard. The dry ice mimics the action of a hardening cabinet, an essential part of the ice cream manufacturing process. When the ice cream is rock-hard, transfer it to your home freezer. It will actually rise to proper serving temperature in the freezer.
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