Monday, January 11, 2010

Peppermint Ice Cream

We made this over the holidays and, ohmygoodness, BEST ICE CREAM EVER. Of course, it's so fattening you should only eat it once a year, but what the heck - it was the holidays! This makes enough for a 1 gallon ice cream maker - if you have a smaller one, you can make half a batch.

4 cups milk (we used 1%)
1 1/2 cup sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
4 eggs, beaten
4 cups whipping cream
2 tbsp. vanilla extract
12 ounces peppermint candy, divided (we use three of those big peppermint sticks, but the round candies would work too.)

In a large saucepan over medium heat, stir together milk, sugar, and salt. Heat to 175 degrees.

Temper the eggs by whisking in a few spoonfuls of the hot milk mixture. Stir quickly so they don't curdle! Stir the egg mixture into the pot of milk, and cook and stir until the mixture reaches 160 degrees (this shouldn't take long). Remove from heat.

Let cool by putting the saucepan in a bowl of ice, stirring constantly. After a couple of minutes, stir in the cream and vanilla. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.

The next day, finely crush 2/3 of the peppermint (I find this works best by double bagging them in heavy freezer bags and using a rolling pin to mash them). Stir into the milk mixture. Freeze according to your ice cream maker's instructions.

Meanwhile, crush the rest of the peppermint into fairly big chunks (1/2 inch or so is good). Once the ice cream is done, stir in the chunks, put it in the freezer, and let it firm up for a few hours.


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