Monday, April 19, 2010

Vanilla Ice Cream

After ranting and raving about the family vanilla ice cream recipe, I thought I should probably post it.

I thought for sure I'd already posted it or at least had it saved on my computer when I went to mix it up last week, but I couldn't find it. I knew I'd seen the actual recipe card (you remember those old fashioned things, don't you?) somewhere in my kitchen recently, so I looked in all of the usual places: the clip where I used to hang cards back when I used them, the miscellaneous basket, I even resorted to looking through the actual recipe card box. The entire thing (which is a mess, because Z dumped it out one time, and I haven't put it back together since, so I had to look through every.single.card). Couldn't find the recipe. I was about to call Mom and have her read it to me or e-mail it to me when I looked one last place: it was magneted to the refrigerator. In plain sight the whole time. Fortunately, I had a friend to chat with on the phone while I was looking, so it wasn't too much of a pain.

Recipe found, I proceeded to mix it up, stick it in the freezer and go directly to the computer to type it in. An hour later (because you don't go "directly" to do anything in this house), it was safely saved in my recipe file. And, just for safe keeping, and because you all really have to try this, here it is for the www, too.

• 4 eggs
• 2 C sugar
• 3-4 C 1/2 & 1/2 or light cream
• 2 T vanilla, preferably Mexican
• 1/2 t salt
• 5-6 C milk (enough to raise mixture level to “fill line” of cylinder)

1. Beat eggs until light.
2. Add sugar gradually, beating until mixture thickens.
3. Add salt and vanilla and some 1/2 & 1/2. Mix
4. Pour into cylinder.
5. Add remaining 1/2 & 1/2 and milk to “fill line.”
6. Chill in fridge.
7. Freeze according to ice cream freezer instructions.

Yes, it has raw eggs in it. And my mother, who has had salmonella and strongly discourages me from eating raw cookie dough as a result (so I don't; nope; not ever), still makes it. It's that good. Live dangerously.

Oh, and when it says "preferably" on the vanilla, referring to Mexican vanilla, that means "only if you want it to be the best homemade vanilla ice cream you've ever tasted." If not, feel free to use regular vanilla flavoring.

Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

We had been looking for a while for a grill to go halvsies on with the other family in our building, and since we finally found one, we've been grilling at least once/week. After a couple of times getting started after the guys got home from work (7:30ish) and not having food to feed the kids until way past their bedtime, we decided that Friday (our Saturday) would be the best day to grill. And, since family tradition is *so* important, I proposed reinstituting my mom's family's tradition of making homemade ice cream when grilling. I mean, family traditions are important, right?

So, the first week, we made the traditional family recipe of vanilla. With Mexican vanilla. Because it is just wrong to make homemade vanilla ice cream with anything besides Mexican vanilla. Really, really wrong.

But I digress.

This week, we decided to break with tradition, I mean, make our own traditions by trying a new flavor. Polls were taken. Votes were cast, and allrecipes was searched. We ended up with Mint Chocolate Chip. Because, since I'm making the mix, my vote trumps. And there were a few other people that wanted it, too. (I think CS, the wife of the downstairs family, was a tad disappointed, so look for a chocolate ice cream recipe next week.)

I found this recipe but, of course, had to make some modifications, not the least of which being to adjust it to the amount required for a *real* ice cream freezer, not one of those mamby pamby countertop versions (do I sound a little bitter, because we have a 110 countertop ice cream maker that we got as a wedding present sitting in our attic in TX? well, I'm not). Plus, there will be none of this "fat free" business. This is ice cream. And that stuff's not good for you, either.

So, without further ado (because there's been enough ado already), here's the recipe we ended up with.

• 3 C half and half
o or 3 C water + 2 C full cream powdered milk
• 2 (14 oz.) cans sweetened condensed milk
• 2 envelopes powdered whipped topping mix
• 1/4 t peppermint extract
• 4 drops green food coloring (optional)

• 3-4 C whole milk (to “fill line” of freezer)

• 2-4 (1 oz.) squares semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
o or 1-2 C mini semisweet chocolate chips

1. In a large mixing bowl, mix half and half, condensed milk, whipped topping mix, extract and food coloring on high speed for 3 minutes.
a. Or use stick blender to mix directly in ice cream freezer canister.
2. Pour into canister.
3. Add whole milk to “fill line.”
4. Cover and refrigerate 2 hours (or overnight).
5. Freeze according to freezer directions.
6. Pour into container and allow to firm up 24 hours in refrigerator freezer.

Caveat: when it says "allow to firm up 24 hours in refrigerator freezer," it means it. The stuff never "set" like ice cream normally would in the ice cream maker itself (could have been one of the ingredients we used being different, since they're local). But it had enough crystals in it to set up fine once we poured it into containers and put it in the freezer overnight. Good things come to those who wait, I guess.

Caveat #2: you will want to eat *way* too much of this stuff. Even if you don't like mint.