Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Coffee Ice Cream

I don't have a photo to post with this entry because the photo is still inaccessible on our home laptop that won't take a charge (note to self: get your butt to MicroCenter and get this taken care of!). But I wanted to go ahead and post the recipe before I have to return the cookbook to the library.

This was my second attempt at making homemade ice cream. The first recipe I made was the easiest one I could find (a no-cook basic vanilla) just so I could get a feel for the use of my new Cuisinart ice cream maker (purchased as a 'reward' to myself for all the hard work Jason and I had put in on our flooring project over the past six months). The basic vanilla was good, but this recipe was OUT OF THIS WORLD. A custard-based ice cream really does taste richer and creamier, and while it requires a little more effort I think it was totally worth it. I also used really good coffee beans: Kona. They were pricey but I just love the flavor so much.

The recipe comes from The Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz. The book has great recipes and is also an excellent resource about the basics behind making ice cream at home. I may have to buy this book because there are so many recipes I still want to try. This one was messy and complicated: lots of bowls and pans and careful choreography to move between them. That's what I should have taken a picture of rather than the finished product!

1 1/2 cups whole milk
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups whole coffee beans
pinch of salt
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
5 large egg yolks
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon finely ground coffee

Warm the milk, sugar, whole coffee beans, salt, and 1/2 cup of the cream in a medium saucepan. Once the mixture is warm, cover, remove from the heat, and let steep at room temperature for 1 hour.

Rewarm the coffee-infused milk mixture. Pour the remaining 1 cup cream into a large bowl and set a mesh strainer on top. In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks. Slowly pour the warm coffee mixture into the egg yolks, whisking constantly, and then scrape the warmed egg yolks back into the saucepan.

Stir the mixture constantly over medium heat with a heatproof spatula, scraping the bottom as you stir, until the mixture thickens and coats the spatula. Pour the custard through the strainer and stir it into the cream. Press on the coffee beans in the strainer to extract as much of the coffee flavor as possible, and then discard the beans. Mix in the vanilla and the finely ground coffee and stir until cool over an ice bath.

Chill the mixture thoroughly in the refrigerator, and then freeze it in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions.

Saturday, August 1, 2009


This post is totally unrelated to food, but that's okay right? I wanted to share a new purchase and recommend a website if you are interested in making a similar purchase!

This weekend is the annual Dublin Irish Festival. Jason and I love to go every year. It's a great place to hear some fantastic music, running the gamut from "Celtic rock" to classic bagpipe-and-drum corps. We also like to watch the Irish dancers, enjoy beer and food, visit the "Celtic Canines" exhibit, and browse the vendors' booths.

This year we were pleased to find a booth that sells Irish dog accessories! While our greyhound Stitch doesn't have an Irish heritage, his "dad" Jason does. And I have a Scottish heritage, so I also love all things tartan.

We settled on a Martingale collar (a special type for sighthounds; it has a double-loop so the collar can't slip off their skinny heads) with a beautiful orange and white knot design and shamrocks on top.

If you are interested in an Irish-themed dog collar or leash for your dog, please check out the vendor's web site: www.mackenziebelts.com. We enjoyed talking with the owner, Heather, because she is also a greyhound owner! In addition to the dog accessories, Heather sells jewelry and belts for humans.

Here is Stitch sleepily modeling his new collar.

"You came over here to rub my belly? Here, let me move my legs out of the way for you."

"Oh, that's not what you came over here for? SIGH."