The only time I eat ice cream is during the warm summer months. It's always so appealing to me as a nighttime snack after a particularly hot and humid day. Hubby however, eats it year round and usually has a pint hidden somewhere in the freezer. Or maybe that's his Crown Royal.... but I digress.
I know ice cream is fattening and that the recommended serving size is 1/2 cup (what a joke, right?) but it took making homemade ice cream to get to me see exactly why it is so fattening. As I was pouring four cups of heavy cream and half & half into my sauce pan and gathering eight egg yolks into a bowl, it was difficult to ignore just how much fat goes into a typical, creamy homemade ice cream recipe. Oh I know there are recipes out there that use milk instead of cream, but if I'm going to eat ice cream, it's going to be the real deal or no deal at all. Believe me; this is the real deal. It has melt-in-your-mouth creaminess and just the right amount of chocolate flavor for my taste. I hope you enjoy it too. In moderation, of course.
Have a safe and happy 4th of July!
Homemade Chocolate Ice Cream (adapted from recipe by Alton Brown)
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (I used Dutch process)
3 cups half & half
1 cup heavy cream
8 large egg yolks
1 cup granulated sugar
pinch of salt
2 tsp vanilla
Place the cocoa powder along with 1 cup of the half-and-half into a medium saucepan over medium heat and whisk to combine. Add the remaining half-and-half and the heavy cream. Bring the mixture just to a simmer, stirring occasionally, and remove from the heat.
In mixing bowl beat the egg yolks until they lighten in color. Gradually beat in the sugar, occasionally scraping down the beaters and sides of mixing bowl. Temper the cream mixture into the eggs and sugar by gradually adding small amounts, until about 1/3 of the cream mixture has been added. Pour in the remainder and return the entire mixture to the saucepan and place over low heat. Add in the pinch of salt and continue to cook, stirring frequently, until the mixture thickens slightly and coats the back of a spoon and reaches 170 to 175 degrees. Pour the mixture through a mesh strainer and into a container and allow to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes. Stir in the vanilla extract.
Cover container and refrigerate for 4-8 hours. (I refrigerated mine overnight.)
Pour into an ice cream maker and process according to the manufacturer's directions. This should take approximately 25 to 35 minutes. Serve as is for soft serve or freeze for another 3 to 4 hours to allow the ice cream to harden.