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Vanilla Straciatella Raspberry Ice Cream



I’ve been enjoying homemade ice cream in a cone lately, instead of the bowl and spoon I'd usually reach for when having ice cream at home. A cone necessitates savoring by design- slowly licking ice cream brings back so many memories from childhood, when my favorite flavor was "blue moon", a now obscure ice cream that was colored like a smurf, and flavored with what, who the heck knows!

Here's my recipe for a vanilla stracciatella ice cream with raspberries. It's heavy on vanilla and egg yolks, which brings a vanilla cake batter flavor to the custard.


The custard is loosely based on the vanilla ice cream from David Lebovitz's excellent book "The Perfect Scoop", which I recommend if you're interested in making ice cream at home. I've modified his recipe with a reduction in sugar (he calls for 3/4 cup sugar, which is just too sweet for me), extra vanilla in the form of both extract and ground vanilla bean (I get mine here), and frozen crushed raspberries + bittersweet chocolate flecks. For ice cream cones, I've been enjoying these, which I get from my local food co-op. The cake and sugar cones are both tasty.


Homemade ice cream tends to be harder in texture than store bought, so plan to let it rest at room temp for 10 or so minutes before scooping.

Ingredients:

-2 cups heavy cream

-1 cup whole milk

-scant 1/2 cup cane sugar

-6 egg yolks

-1 teaspoon vanilla extract

-1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste (I like this powdered vanilla bean)

-Large pinch coarse salt (approx. 1/4 teaspoon)

-3 oz. dark chocolate, roughly chopped (a bar, not chocolate chips!)

-1 cup frozen raspberries, smashed into tiny bits


Method:

In a large bowl, add 1 cup heavy cream and vanilla extract, and set aside.


In a large, heavy bottomed pan, combine remaining 1 cup cream, 1 cup milk, vanilla bean, and sugar. Whisk to combine over medium heat. While the cream mixture heats, put egg yolks in a medium heat proof bowl.

Once the cream and sugar is hot (before it comes to a simmer) slowly pour a few tablespoons of the mixture into the egg yolks, whisking the egg yolks as you pour in the hot cream mixture.

Continue pouring the hot mixture into the yolks, a bit at a time, whisking the yolk mixture constantly. Next, pour the egg yolk mixture back into the pan, and heat over medium/low heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens slightly, to the consistency of cold heavy cream. Immediately remove from heat, to prevent over-cooking of the custard.


Put a fine mesh strainer over the bowl you set aside with cream, then pour the hot custard through the fine mesh strainer to catch any tiny bits of egg that may have formed. Stir to combine, and refrigerate overnight or for at least 4 hours.


Pour chilled custard into ice cream maker, and churn until a soft serve ice cream consistency is reached.


When the ice cream has reached a soft serve consistency in your ice cream maker, add chocolate to a heat proof bowl, and set over a pan of simmering water. Stir the chocolate until most pieces are melted, removing the chocolate from the heat when just a few small pieces of chocolate remain- they will finish melting with the residual heat.


With the ice cream maker still churning, use a spoon to slowly drizzle in the melted chocolate, in as thin a drizzle as you can manage. Try to aim the thin stream of chocolate towards the paddle, so it immediately gets churned into the ice cream. The churning action will cause the thin stream of chocolate to break up into small shards of chocolate that will be enjoyable to eat, more enjoyable than hard, larger pieces that would occur if you just spooned the chocolate in, in great big globs.


Finally, add the frozen crushed raspberries and churn to combine. Enjoy the ice cream immediately, if you want a very soft textured ice cream like soft-serve, or pack into freezer containers and freeze for a few hours before enjoying. For easy scooping, let ice cream sit at room temp for 10-15 minutes before scooping.

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