As I peruse cookbooks to find desserts for my Labor Day weekend party menu, I realize that my summer is ending, which means it's time to get out my ice-cream machine.
It's simple idea to mix a few ingredients together and put them in an ice-cream maker. Within an hour, you can sample the most luscious frozen treat. You will notice that I prefer the egg-free recipe. With eggs, you have to cook the mixture first, turning it into custard and cooling completely before freezing. This way is easier, and you won’t miss the eggs—this ice cream is rich enough without them.
Vanilla Ice Cream
1 ½ cups whole milk
1 1/8 cups sugar
3 cups heavy cream
1 ½ tablespoons pure vanilla extract or 1 vanilla bean
In a medium mixing bowl, use a hand mixer on low speed to combine milk and sugar until sugar is dissolved. Sit in cream and vanilla—if using vanilla bean, split bean in half and scrape off the seeds into milk mixture. Transfer mixture into the freezer bowl. Follow manufacturer’s instructions for freezing time, about 25-30 minutes. The ice cream will have soft, creamy texture. If you want a firmer consistency, transfer ice cream to an airtight container for another two hours.
Makes about 2 quarts
Vanilla ice cream is a canvas for my other creations. Just add extra ingredients to this basic vanilla ice cream toward the end of churning time. Here are some flavors I've made:
Blueberry Swirl: Add 2 cups cooked blueberry sauce
Key Lime Bar: Add 2 cups of chopped key lime bars
Turtle: Add ½ cup each of caramel sauce, chocolate, and pecans.