I love ice cream. It’s not the same love I have for my shoes or even the love I have for sleep. And I don’t mean the teenage infatuated kind of love. No. It’s the guilty, sort of adulterous love. The love that not only tempts, but actually convinces me to stop for a quick scoop on the way home from work, despite the perfectly delicious meal waiting for me.
I know I am not alone in this affair. There are others of you out there. I know there are even a few others in my family, one of which helps me justify the sin I face daily. My father-in-law defends this love. Each time we visit he explains that ice cream kills calories. He says it freezes them. Therefore it is absolutely necessary to have some after each meal. This man has years on him and experience under his belt. He has made it through a few wars and the depression…why wouldn’t I trust him? And so we indulge together.
The real problem is that ice cream reciprocates the love. I constantly hear it calling out my name to come back for more. It recently called again when I was gifted an ice cream attachment for my stand mixer. That’s when I realized that our relationship had only just begun. I started searching for the perfect recipe to test with this maker. If there is one thing I want with my ice cream it is caramel. When I found this recipe for Salted Caramel Ice Cream, I couldn’t say no. I am glad I didn’t.
This ice cream took some patience but it was well worth the wait. It was luscious. The salt was noticeable right before the sweet could have been overwhelming. And the texture was amazingly smooth. As usual, I added a bit of chocolate. I chopped up an Askinosie 70% San Jose Del Tambo Chocolate Bar and tossed it on top. It satisfied my craving for a few days; but I can’t help to think about what ice cream I will make next.
salted caramel ice cream
- adapted from Gourmet
makes one quart
- 1-1/4 cup sugar
- 2-1/4 cup heavy cream (1-1/4 cup should be slightly warm)
- 1/2 teaspoon good sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup whole milk
- 3 large eggs
make the caramel
In a dry, 10-inch skillet, heat 1 cup of sugar over medium heat. Stir constantly with a wooden spoon until all of the sugar starts to melt. Continue to cook, stirring less frequently, until the sugar melts evenly and becomes a dark amber color. Before moving on, all of the sugar should be melted; no large pieces should remain.
Add the warm 1-1/4 cups cream to the sugar mixture. It is a good idea to use slightly warm cream to prevent the sugar from clumping. Stir until all of the caramel has dissolved. This will take patience. Don’t be tempted to raise the temperature above medium, just continue stirring until the caramel has dissolved. Transfer the caramel to a heat-proof bowl. Mix in the sea salt and vanilla. Cool to room temperature.
make the custard
In a small saucepan, bring the milk, remaining cream and sugar to a slight boil; stirring occasionally.
In a medium bowl, lightly whisk the eggs. Then add half of the warm milk mixture to the eggs, whisking continuously. Pour the egg/milk mixture back into the saucepan and cook over medium heat. Continue stirring until the custard reaches 170 degrees on a thermometer (don’t let the mixture boil). To remove any of the solidified egg, pour the custard through a sieve into a large bowl. Stir the cooled caramel into the custard and mix until combined. Chill custard for at least 3 hours.
Using an ice cream maker or stand mixer attachment, freeze custard. I used a Kitchen Aid attachment and it took about 20 minutes to freeze. When ice cream is thickened to your preference, store in an airtight container and freeze for a few hours before enjoying.
If desired, top with chocolate or serve with warm apple pie.