Sunday, August 9, 2009

Homemade Ice Cream Worth the Effort

I’m not what you call an ice cream person.

Meaning: I could probably go for years upon years without ice cream and think all is right with the world.

Pasta, sushi, chocolate, coffee, wine, cheese. Well, these food groups are needed for my survival.

But whether you eat ice cream every night while watching TV or once in a blue moon, you seriously need to try homemade ice cream.

I know your cynical self is thinking, “Why, Susan, why?? There are thousands of flavors and brands and sizes and styles of ice cream found any time, any place in the U.S.”

This is so true, but once you taste the insane fabulousness of homemade ice cream you will be converted. Plus, everybody who has tasted my homemade ice cream LOVES it. I mean, put a bowl of it in front of your dinner guests and they will think you are a total culinary rock star. And it’s not like the process requires intensive labor as it did back in the 1800s. A machine is doing all the work.

So how does a gal who really doesn’t eat very much ice cream conclude that she must purchase an ice cream maker and make delicious concoctions with it?

I had been on the fence about it for many months, when two key events took place:

First, Macy’s put the Kitchenaid ice cream maker on sale. It attaches to my Kitchenaid mixer, and it’s stored in the freezer so it’s pretty much awesome.

Then, a panel discussion was held with two experts in the field: My then 5-year-old and 8-year-old nieces. When asked if Aunt Suzie should purchase an ice cream maker, the two girls declared firmly while jumping up and down, “YES!”

It was as if God was sending me a message.

So my mission was clear.

With ice cream maker in hand, I set about my task: Chocolate chip ice cream.

Honestly, the end result is pure divinity. It’s so fresh and so clean unlike store-bought containers.

As a result of owning an ice cream maker, I now eat more ice cream – at home. Thanks to my God-given food allergy to nuts, I avoid ice cream parlors like the plague. They usually have friendly signs saying that cross-contamination is happening in big, red all cap letters. So, I just don’t go there.

Below is my Super Duper Chocolate Chip Ice Cream recipe. And for the record it is the perfect accompaniment for homemade brownies. I basically take the Betty Crocker old-school spiral bound cookbook recipe for vanilla ice cream and add mini chocolate chips.

In addition, I do splurge on my vanilla products, especially for something like ice cream, where the flavors are the star of the show. I highly recommend Nielsen-Massey vanilla paste for my ice cream. I’ve also used the Nielson-Massey vanilla, but the paste provides those old-timey flecks of vanilla bean throughout the ice cream that I love. The paste is $11 a pop and the extract is $19. The products are available at Sur la Table and Williams-Sonoma.

Making ice cream isn’t difficult, but it does take many hours of cooking, chilling out and waiting. But in our hectic world, you need to learn to relax in the kitchen. It is so worth it!

Super Duper Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

3 extra large egg yolks, slightly beaten
½ cup sugar
1 cup whole milk
¼ tsp. salt
2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 Tbsp. vanilla paste or extract
1/3 cup mini chocolate chips

Before you begin, chill a glass bowl in the freezer for an hour.

Mix egg yolks, sugar, milk and salt in saucepan. Cook over medium heat stirring constantly. Right when it starts to bubble, take it off the heat.

Pour the mixture into your chilled bowl. Refrigerate uncovered for at least three hours.

Stir whipping cream and vanilla into milk mixture. Pour into a 1-quart ice cream maker and freeze according to manufacturer’s directions. Stir in the chocolate chips.

Scoop mixture into a container and place in the freezer for desired firmness. In my opinion, it’s good to go in about an hour in the freezer.


  1. yum!
    we have a cuisinart one. makes amazing cannoli ice cream! our favorite.


  2. Sounds yummy! I'll have to try that with my Cuisinart. There really is nothing like homemade ice cream ... the texture just beats anything you can buy in a store, and I think it freezes better.

  3. Cannoli ice cream. Natalie, give up the recipe, girl.