Yields: 1 quart
Preparation time: 15 mins + 2 hours (inactive)
Cooking time: 30 mins
Ingredients needed to make Vanilla Bean Ice Cream:
For the ice cream:
- 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
- 1 cup whole milk
- 6 large egg yolks
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1 tbsp vodka
- ¾ tsp pure vanilla extract
- 2 tbsp corn syrup
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ tsp salt
For the syrup:
- ¾ cup packed light brown sugar
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- ¾ cup water
- 1 tbsp light corn syrup
- ½ tsp espresso powder
- ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 tbsp pure vanilla extract
- Pinch of kosher salt
Cooking instructions for Vanilla Bean Ice Cream:
- Empty a cup of heavy cream into a medium saucepan, along with the milk, corn syrup and sugar.
- Sprinkle a dash of salt into it and heat the mixture over moderate heat while stirring at times to prevent the mixture from sticking to the base of the pan.
- Scrape the seeds out of the vanilla bean and stir it into the warm milk mixture, along with the pod itself.
- Put a lid on and turn off the heat; let it rest for about half an hour at room temperature to let the vanilla seeds and pod infuse their flavor into the mixture.
- Pour rest of the cream into a large bowl and place a fine mesh sieve on top of it.
- Whisk the eggs together into a pale, yellowish mixture, in a separate bowl.
- Pour the vanilla flavoured milk mixture into the whisked egg yolks gradually, in a steady stream, while beating continuously to temper the egg yolks.
- Pour the tempered egg yolk into the pan and cook it over moderate heat while stirring constantly with a wooden spatula, until it turns thick enough to coat the back of the spatula.
- Pass this custard through a fine mesh sieve and whisk the cream into the strained custard.
- Plop the vanilla bean back to the custard and beat in a bout of vodka, followed by a splash of vanilla extract.
- Place the bowl of custard in an ice bath and stir until it cools down completely.
- Leave the custard into the refrigerator overnight to chill.
- On the following day, discard the vanilla bean and pour it into an ice cream maker.
- Churn the ice cream according to the manufacturer’s instruction and spoon it into a freeze-safe container.
- Leave it in the freezer until it sets while you prepare the chocolate sauce.
- To make the chocolate sauce, bring a mixture of water and the sugars to a boil.
- Lower the heat to moderate low and beat in the corn syrup, espresso as well as cocoa powder and a dash of salt, whisking constantly until they blend into a smooth mixture, without lumps.
- Simmer the mixture until it reduces into thicker syrup and turn off the heat.
- Whisk in the vanilla and pass it through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl.
- Cool the strained syrup to room temperature and transfer it into a squeeze bottle.
- Refrigerate until required.
- Once the ice cream sets, scoop it out into serving cups and drizzle lots of chocolate syrup over them.
- Serve chilled.
Image credit: Wikimedia Commons