Thursday, October 22, 2015

Pumpkin Ice Cream

Where there are egg whites, there are egg yolks. Following the fluffy angel food cupcakes, I had a bunch of egg yolks leftover. And I don't like to waste food so those egg yolks went into ice cream. It's not exactly ice cream season but it is pumpkin season so let's enjoy the unseasonably warm weather with some ice cream.

I recently wondered what the purpose of an ice cream maker is. You still need to put the mixture in the freezer to thicken so why do I also have to churn it in a frozen bowl for awhile? Upon discussing with a colleague, the conclusion was the churning is necessary or the mixture will just become a solid brick. So I don't have an ice cream maker so I thought if I just stirred it out of the freezer every once in awhile, that would work.

Well, I ended up with a solid brick. So I recommend an ice cream maker if you're following this recipe because the flavor is all there and is amazing but you need the machinery to make the texture right.

This recipe is from Joy the Baker's second cookbook, Homemade Decadence, which has an entire section devoted to delicious and unique ice cream flavors. Egg yolks and brown sugar are whisked together in a medium bowl. Pumpkin puree and all the flavors of fall (cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger) are cooked in a small saucepan to soften the pumpkin. These are both set aside.

In a medium saucepan, heavy cream and milk are heated together. You want the milk to be just under boiling point. The cream mixture is then poured through a mesh strainer. This step miffed me at first because we aren't making any berry ice cream so don't need to catch seeds. But when the milk and cream cook, you get some curdling and the strainer is to catch those cooked pieces so you have a nice creamy ice cream. So use the strainer.

Then pour the milk and cream mixture into the eggs and sugar mixture, whisking and stirring as you go. The last piece is mixing in the pumpkin with all those spices mixed in. Important: use your ice cream maker to complete this process, following its instructions. This most likely entails pouring in the maker, letting it circulate for a bit and then freezing overnight in a bowl before serving.

For a bonus, you can add some ginger snaps to it for some extra crunch or even stir in some chocolate chips. Confirmed: it tastes just like pumpkin pie.

  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup whole milk
  1. In a small saucepan, stir together the pumpkin puree and spices. Allow the pumpkin to start bubbling a little bit. Set aside.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and brown sugar. Also set aside.
  3. In a medium saucepan, combine the heavy cream and milk. Stir together over medium heat until just below boiling. The milk mixture will begin to steam.
  4. Pour the milk mixture through a strainer into a medium bowl. There will be some curds that are caught by the strainer, resulting in a spongy waste. You won't need this stuff.
  5. Allow the milk mixture to cool slightly before adding the egg-sugar mixture. Whisk to combine.
  6. Stir the pumpkin into the medium bowl and combine completely.
  7. Follow the instructions for your ice cream maker (likely something along the lines of adding the batter to the ice cream churner bowl, churn, freeze overnight etc.).
  8. You can add some crumbled ginger snaps or chocolate to this for extra decadence. Serve in abundance. 

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