Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Coffee Ice Cream

My Cuisinart ice cream maker has been the equivalent of a car on blocks that sits in the front yard season after season. When I purchased the ice cream maker ten years ago, I had good intentions, but I rarely used it because I was unsatisfied with the texture of the ice cream it produced. I wanted an ice cream like I would find at my favorite ice cream shops. I wanted an ice cream that could be easily scooped but didn't melt into soup a minute later. I wanted an ice cream with a creamy, velvety texture, not grainy  ice crystals. I resigned myself to the fact that I would have to get quality ice cream elsewhere.

Last November Jeni Britton Bauer's book Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams at Home inspired me to dust off the ice cream machine, and after ten years of attempting to make great homemade ice cream, I succeeded. In fact, I was so successful that I made about 12 quarts of ice cream over a one-month span.  Flavor after flavor rocked my world.  This cookbook needs to be in every kitchen in American, so do yourself a favor, and purchase a copy.  This book helped this small-brained fella understand the science behind a great scoop of ice cream.

Now I just need to convince my boss to let me go on sabbatical, so I can take the "cow to cone" ice cream short course at Penn State University.

Jeni's Coffee Ice Cream
  • 2 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon plus teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 1/2 ounces (3 tablespoons) cream cheese softened
  • 1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup dark-roast coffee beans coarsely ground
  1. In a small bowl whisk the cornstarch with two tablespoons of milk, until you create a slurry.
  2. Whisk the cream cheese and salt in a medium bowl until smooth.  Fill a large bowl with ice and water.
  3. Combine the remaining milk, the cream, sugar and corn syrup in a 4-quart or larger sauce pan.  Bring this to a boil over medium-high heat, and cook for 4 minutes.  Remove from the heat, add the coffee and let steep for five minutes.
  4. Strain the milk/cream mixture through a sieve lined with a layer of cheesecloth.  Squeeze the coffee in the cheesecloth to extract as much liquid as possible.  Discard the grounds.
  5. Return the cream mixture to the saucepan and gradually whisk in the cornstarch slurry.  Bring back to a boil over medium-high heat.  Cook, stirring with a rubber spatula, until slightly thickened, about 1 minute.  Remove from the heat.
  6. Whisk the hot milk mixture into the cream cheese until smooth.  Pour the mixture into a 1-gallon freezer bag and submerge the sealed bag in the ice bath.  Let stand, adding more ice as necessary, until cold, about 30 minutes.
  7. Cut one of the bottom corners off the freezer bag, and pour the ice cream base in the frozen canister. Spin until thick and creamy.  Pack the ice cream into a storage container, press a sheet of parchment directly against the surface, and seal with an airtight lid. Freeze for four hours

screaming for ice cream,


Nella said...

I'm with you, on the ice cream thang. I received the Cuisinart freezer for Christmas and have started my own quest for very good ice cream. I think you may have saved me a few batches. I shall get Jeni's book and in the mean time, make the coffee ice cream. Glad to see you back in great form!!

Steve O said...

Did not see cream cheese coming …