(How’s that title for alliteration in the title?) 🙂
For Christmas, we received a “toy” sure to provide us with years of entertainment and tastiness—the Kitchenaid Mixer Ice Cream Maker Attachment. Since beginning to eat local, we haven’t had as much ice cream as we would’ve liked. In the summer, we were able to get amazing ice cream from Keepsake Farm, and we’ve treated ourselves to sundaes from local ice cream parlors like The Cup and Nuts About Ice Cream (I can’t get enough of their kulfi, saffron pistachio, or ginger ice creams!), but if we wanted to keep some in our freezer, we were stuck with the additive-full stuff from the grocery store or pay top dollar.
It took us a couple of months to clear out enough room in the freezer (it was full of preserved summer produce) to fit the big ice cream maker bowl, but as of February, our kitchen creamery was up and running! So far, we’ve stuck with the Philadelphia-style ice cream, which doesn’t require cooking because it is egg-free, as opposed to the French style with a cooked custard base. We’ve experimented with different proportions of cream vs. milk or half and half—In fact, our first batch, we used all whole milk. The consistency was a bit more like sherbet than ice cream, but since it was fruit flavored, that was great! Our favorite ratio right now is 1:1 cream to whole milk.
If you purchase raw or non-homogenized milk, like we do, you can get cream without buying it from the grocery store! All you need is a clear beverage dispenser, like the ones people serve iced tea in. Simply pour your milk in, and let it rest in the fridge overnight. You’ll see that there’s a layer of cream on the top third (approximately) of the dispenser. Using the spout at the bottom, drain the thinner milk into another container. What’s left in the dispenser is cream, and what you poured off is skim milk!
The formula for making Philadelphia-style ice cream is quite simple, and you can really get creative with flavors! So far, we’ve made blueberry gingersnap; peanut butter; vanilla with berries and cocoa nibs; orange blossom, rosemary & black pepper; and graham cracker, honey & peanut butter.
Here’s the basic formula, with notes regarding different flavoring options following:
Basic Sweet Cream Ice Cream:
- 4 c. liquid (Experiment with your favorite proportions—The more milk, the icier it will be. We like 1:1 cream to milk)
- 1/2-3/4 c. sugar (you can also use honey, agave, etc.)
- pinch salt
- Whisk together liquid, sugar and salt in large bowl.
- Chill ice cream base while you set up your ice cream maker.
- Pour ice cream base into ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions.
- Remove from ice cream maker, spoon into storage container, and freeze until solid.
- Enjoy ice cream that will taste better than you’ve ever had!
- The flavors will be subdued when the mixture is frozen, so don’t hesitate to go a little heavy on your add-ins.
- Don’t be afraid to experiment! One of the best things about making your own ice cream is that you can be even more creative than Ben & Jerry’s!
- Liquid flavorings (extracts, jams, sauces, spreads, etc.): If you want these liquids mixed through the ice cream, as opposed to swirled, whisk them in with the cream and sugar in the beginning.
- Powdered flavorings (dried herbs or spices, citrus zests, etc.): Whisk into initial liquid mixture.
- Chunky add-ins (cookie pieces, pretzel chunks, fruit, chocolate chips, etc.): Add to ice cream maker halfway through freezing process to avoid chunks all sinking to the bottom.
- Swirls (hot fudge, peanut butter, etc.): After ice cream is done in the machine, spread part of it into storage container, then drizzle or dollop your topping over the layer. Add another layer of ice cream, and repeat until all ice cream is in container. Freeze until solid.