I like making ice cream

Beloved ice cream maker with, it turns out, broken bowlPeople, this was supposed to be a fully victorious post telling you about how awesome making your ice cream is.  And it’ll still be that, but I have to let you know that I broke my ice cream maker’s freezer bowl utterly unintentionally and am not feeling the love right now.  I had to order another one from Cuisinart, who said I was past warranty and couldn’t get a free one.  See, the manual doesn’t say “Don’t use any hot water, only lukewarm, as only a few seconds of hot water in your cold bowl will ruin the freezing gel forever.”  It just says “don’t put in the dishwasher.”  I turned on the tap to rinse it out after a round of ice cream making and very hot water came out–after I realized it 30 seconds later, it was too late.  Th bowl would not re-freeze, which I learned yesterday as I tried to make frozen yogurt.

So, lesson learned.  I can’t really complain because I got this guy–the big 2-quart maker–for a steal on Craigslist.  It’s a $70 machine, and even after buying the new bowl, I won’t have paid that much.  So that’s awesome.

So is the ice cream.  Holy cow.  Making your ice cream is the best.thing.ever.  EVER!  You can make all the fun flavors you’d like and you know what’s going into them!  There are no stabilizers, no corn syrup, no odd ingredients you can’t identify.  Frankly you can only get that kind of honesty from Hagen Dazs , which I can’t justify spending the money on.  With this, though, I can spend what I would spend on a pint of Haagen Dazs (how do they spell that?) and get at least a quart if not two of ice cream.  And it’s the best, richest, creamiest stuff.   Mmmmmmmm.  I wish I had some right now, but alas!…

Anyway, we’ve made a bunch of recipes.  I started with a straightforward custard-based vanilla recipe, and have always used 1% milk instead of whole with no problems at all.  Faaantastic, and while a little time-consuming with a zillion steps, totally worth it.   Here you go, care of the kitchn.

Next I made a strawberry sorbet with berries I’d picked. This was tasty but over-froze and was hard to eat. Sorbets are pretty straightforward berry and sugar combos. I can’t even remember where I found this one. Might have been the book that came with the machine. This is pretty much it, only I didn’t use kirsch or lime juice.

Then we made chocolate, using a non-custard recipe some call Philadelphia style. You mix your sugar and your milk and in this case, baking cocoa, with a handmixer until the sugar and cocoa dissolve. Then you add the heavy cream. Easy as pie, you then pour it into your machine and a half hour later, you put it in the freezer to finish firming up. Mine usually take an overnight freezer stint in order to be completely done.

Here’s the recipe:

1 c unsweetened cocoa powder
2/3 c sugar
1/2 c firmly packed brown sugar
1 1/2 c whole milk
3 1/4 c heavy cream
1 T vanilla

Place cocoa and sugars in a medium bowl; stir to combine. Add the whole milk and use a hand mixer on low speed to whisk to combine until the cocoa and sugars are dissolved, about 1-2 (REALLY MESSY!) minutes. Stir in cream and vanilla.

Freeze as directed.

Next up I made a mint chocolate chip, and I made it sort of from recipe and sort of from my head and honestly, I’m too tired to remember. This was sort of a disaster anyway, as I used light cream to see how it would work. The answer? Not well. It was really icy. Tasty and cold, but icy.

But that doesn’t matter too much because people, the last batch we made, well, it was the piece de resistance. The tastiest, creamiest, most insanely delicious ice cream. Peanut butter, with peanut butter cups studded throughout. It’s a pity we ate it in 3.5 days, as I could really use some today as the day gets warmer. It’s a riff off one by David Lebowitz, who is, I understand, the Royal King of Ice Cream Recipes. Or maybe the Grand Puba. Either way. It’s an easy recipe, too, using half-and-half instead of a cream and milk mix, as you just blend everything and dump it in the ice cream maker. Fantastic, I’m telling you. Just fantastic. Here’s a link to the modification I used. Click here as fast as you can.

If you’ve been thinking about getting an ice cream maker, I suggest you prowl Craigslist. Getting one on the cheap is the way to go, especially if you’re prone to shelving small appliances after a couple of rounds. I think ours, so long as I don’t kill another bowl, is a permanent part of our repetoire. Pity exercise is not also on my list!

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