The original plan was to bake brownie shells and serve the ice cream in them. So, I told Dexie, the feisty cook who also made ice cream over the holidays. But the oven was problematic and the cake shell baking pan was too large to fit into the turbo broiler. No brownie shells materialized, in short. But I went ahead and made the ice cream.
Based on a recipe that I had been imagining for quite some time. The custard base for this ice cream is a modified leche flan but with vanilla added. And this is, by far, the best ice cream I have ever made.
Vanilla leche flan ice cream
- Stir together the milks and cream.
- Split the vanilla pod. Scrape the seeds into the milk and cream mixture. Throw in the pod as well.
- Pour the milk and cream mixture into a pan with a thick bottom and set over medium heat. Cook until just starting to simmer (see photos that illustrate what “simmer” means).
- While the milk heats, stir together the egg yolks, salt and sugar.
- When the milk is hot, pour half very slowly into the egg mixture, stirring as you pour. Continue stirring until smooth. You’re tempering the egg yolks so that they don’t cook and curdle in the pan later.
- Pour the egg mixture into the pan and stir. Continue cooking over medium heat until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon (see illustration).
- Turn off the heat and fish out the vanilla pod. Cover the custard with cling wrap to prevent skin from forming on the surface (see illustration). Cool the custard to room temperature then chill in the fridge for several hours.
- Pour the custard into your ice cream maker and let the machine turn the liquid custard into ice cream.
Now, for the serving suggestion. Fill a dessert glass with cut up fresh fruits. Top with a large scoop of vanilla leche flan ice cream.
- Pour dulce de leche over the ice cream. If the dulce de leche is too thick to pour, just heat for 30 seconds in the microwave.
- Top the ice cream with something crunchy. I like toasted coconut. Nuts will work too.