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Sunday, 24 November 2013

Miss Pink Cheeks....Strawberry Swirl Vanilla Ice Cream!

" Whipping up a batch of home made ice cream at home is never that easy without an ice cream maker. And its such a long process, I mean you gotta separate the yolks, boil the milk, make the custard try not to curdle it and the many times you will have to churn the ice cream!!! Blah! Blah! Blah! "

Wait...Not until you try this recipe! This is my first batch of home made ice cream and I have to confess, I never thought it was gonna be that easy. Or I would say "therapeutic"! 

Ok, so there are two ways in making an ice cream. One, the French Style and the other is The American Ice Cream also called Philadelphia Style Ice Cream. The Difference is that French Style Ice creams are made with eggs as their base so its thick, silkier and forms less or Zero ice crystals. Whereas it's American Cousin is made with just sugar, milk and cream making them a little-bit-lighter. 

After debating over French and the American, I finally decided to do it the French way. I have adapted the recipe STRAWBERRY SWIRL VANILLA ICE CREAM a.k.a Miss PINK CHEEKS (as I like to call it) from Food Wanderings. The post may look long, the process may look long but trust me...the entire making was an absolute ease. And I must tell you about the ice cream. One word...No More Store bought!!! Well that's four words actually, oopsie! It was THE perfect scoop of ice cream I have ever had. I didn't taste the egg at all, the texture was so smooth and silky, and ice crystals? What Ice Crystals??? 

Can you see the specks of Vanilla Bean?
This recipe is a definite keeper. 

Below are some great tips for home made ice cream by Shuli Madnick from Food Wanderings so make sure you click on the picture for those tips and tricks. 

Tip 1:

Picture Courtesy: Shuli Madnick from Food Wanderings

Tip 2:

Picture Courtesy: Shuli Madnick from Food Wanderings
Makes Approx 2 ltrs 
You Will Need:

500 ml of Whole Milk (I used a 3% Fat, but Nothing Less Than That)
400 ml of Whipping Cream (A Medium Fat Fresh Cream Will also Work Just Fine)
6 Egg Yolks
1 Vanilla Pod
A Cup of Caster Sugar
2 tsp of Vanilla Extract (Optional)

For Strawberry Purée:

1 1/2 Cups of Strawberries
3 - 4 tbsp of Caster Sugar

The Cooking:

Making the Strawberry Purée:

Cut the stems off the strawberries and thickly slice. Place in a bowl and sprinkle over the sugar. Mix well and let it sit in the fridge. Mix the strawberries few times till the sugar is dissolved. Blend it in a food processor and store in an air tight container in the fridge until needed. The purée can be smooth or a little chunky, however you like them. You can even make this a couple of days before.

Making the Vanilla Ice Cream Base:

Step 1:

Separate the eggs yolks and add the sugar. With an electric hand mixer, whisk the yolks and sugar together till its pale and fluffy.

Step 2:

Making the Crème Anglaise:

Split the vanilla pod and with the back of your knife scrap off the vanilla bean. In a heavy bottom sauce pan, pour the milk and mix in the vanilla bean and stick in the pods too. Stir the milk over medium low heat till the milk just begins to boil.

Take off heat and pour a ladle of milk into the egg and start whisking immediately. Pour in couple of more ladles of milk into the yolk mixture and keep whisking. This process is called TEMPERING. Its nothing but increasing the temperature of the eggs so that it won't curdle when you add it to the milk.

Now pour the tempered yolk mixture into the milk and place over low heat. With a heat proof spatula or a wooden spoon stir the custard constantly until it thickens. Make sure you reach all the way to the bottom of the sauce pan. This will take about 5 - 7 mins. To know when the custard is done, run your finger along the back of the wooden spoon or the spatula. If the path where your finger has travelled stays intact then its DONE. If it drips down and merges, let it cook for few more mins. This custard is called Crème Anglaise, a dessert on its own.

The Crème Anglaise must be cooled immediately. The fastest way to do it is to place the sauce pan over an ice bath and gently stir till the custard is completely cooled. Pass the custard through a fine sieve, just in case you have cooked the yolks. But there shouldn't be any, keep that in mind.

Step 3:

Pour the whipping cream into a bowl and with a electric hand mixer whip till it forms SOFT PEAKS. 

Step 4:

Now gently whisk the cream into the custard till everything is fully incorporated. And that's the Basic Vanilla ice cream made. Let this chill for few hours or overnight.

Step 5: Churn!!! 

Churning Using An Ice Cream Maker:

If you have an ice - cream maker, churn the chilled ice cream according to the manufacture's direction.

Don't Have an Ice Cream Maker?

If you don't have an ice cream maker (I Don't), once the ice cream base has been frozen for an hour or two process them in a food processor / stand mixer / electric hand mixer / a whisk. Freeze the ice cream for the second time for an hour or two and repeat the process. Freeze the ice for the third time and again repeat the process for the third time and freeze until before serving. And that's how you do it without an ice cream maker.

Note: I churned only a couple of time, yet it was unbelievably creamy!!!

Step 6: 

Making the Strawberry Swirl Vanilla Ice Cream:

The ice cream must be in a scoop-able soft serve consistency.  Place couple of scoops of ice cream in a storage container and pour a thin layer of strawberry purée. Top off with few more scoops of ice cream and continue the layering process till all the ice cream is layered up. With a knife gently swirl the ice cream layers. Freeze the ice cream for at least 4 hrs or until serving.

Allow the ice cream to thaw for few mins before serving. Dip ice cream scooper in cold or lukewarm water before scooping for a clean scoop.

Important Pointers:
  • Tempering the yolks before making the custard is very important and a must. Untempered yolks will curdle when added to the hot milk. 
  • You can also boil the milk and cream together. But whisking the cream till soft peaks and then adding it to the custard makes the ice cream more silkier and softer. 
  • Store the ice cream in an air tight container or tightly cover the top of the ice cream with foil. When frozen unwrapped the ice cream will pick up weird flavours from your freezer.

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Happy Scooping!!!


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