Monday, December 31, 2012

Ice Cream # 10: Eggnog

Last year was the first time I made homemade eggnog and ever since then I've been wondering why I didn't make it sooner! This year, I thought instead of making vanilla ice cream to go with our pies this Christmas, I'd mix it up and try making eggnog ice cream. When I was looking at my recipe the other day for old fashioned eggnog, I realized it was basically the same base recipe I would use to make ice cream. How serendipitous!

The methods for making eggnog ice cream are the same as when making the beverage. You heat the milk and cream and then temper it with the eggs, cook it until it coats the back of a spatula, and voila: you have your custard base. Of course, you can't add as much liquor as you would in the beverage (otherwise the ice cream wouldn't freeze), but other than that, the methods are the same. 

As always, we had far too many sweets for dessert this Christmas, but none could resist the eggnog ice cream. I think it's sure to become a holiday favorite. Wishing everyone a happy and healthy new year!


5 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
1/8 tsp. kosher salt
2 cups heavy cream
1 cup whole milk
2 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg (plus extra for garnish)
1/8 tsp. vanilla extract
2 tsp. spiced rum, bourbon, or brandy 

Begin by filling a large metal bowl with about 2-inches of ice water. Place a slightly smaller metal bowl inside. Put a fine mesh strainer or sieve over the two bowls and set aside.

Using a handheld or stand mixer, beat the egg yolks, sugar, and salt until pale yellow in color and the sugar has dissolved. Set aside.

In a medium saucepan, combine the heavy cream, milk, and nutmeg and cook over high heat until the mixture comes just to a boil, stirring often. Remove from heat and slowly pour the hot milk mixture into the beaten eggs and sugar, whisking constantly. Using a rubber spatula, scrape the mixture back into the saucepan and cook until it is thick enough to coat the back of the spatula (or 160 to 170 degrees F on an instant read thermometer). 

Remove the custard from heat and pour through the sieve into the prepared metal bowl. Stir the custard until cool. Stir in the vanilla extract and liquor. Place a sheet of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the custard and another over the bowl. Refrigerate for several hour until cold, preferably overnight.

Process the ice cream in an ice cream machine according to the manufacturer's instructions. Transfer the ice cream to quart containers and freeze until ready to use. Garnish each serving of ice cream with a sprinkling of freshly grated nutmeg.

Yield: About 5 cups

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