Thursday, September 12, 2013

Having a Ball

Summer is rapidly coming to a close and while I'm ready to say good-bye to hot and humid weather, there are things I love about summer that I will miss. Towards the top of that list is ice cream, especially of the homemade variety. We only managed to make strawberry ice cream this summer, due to a snafu with our ice cream freezer (motor burn out, we think). But when I came across a recipe for vanilla bean ice cream that made a single quart and I actually had vanilla beans on hand, it was the perfect opportunity to finally pull out our ice cream ball. Finally as in my mom gave it to me as a birthday or Christmas gift several years ago, and we hadn't used it yet. (Sorry, Mommy!)

Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
from Cooking Light

1 cup half-and-half
1/2 cup sugar, divided
2 Tbsp. light-colored corn syrup
1/8 tsp. salt
1 (12-ounce) can evaporated low-fat milk
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
3 large egg yolks

Combine the half-and-half, 1/4 cup sugar, corn syrup, salt, and evaporated milk in a medium heavy saucepan. Scrape seeds from vanilla bean; add seeds and bean to milk mixture. Heat milk mixture to 180˚ or until tiny bubbles form around edge (do not boil). Remove pan from heat; cover and let stand 10 minutes. Combine remaining 1/4 cup sugar and egg yolks in a medium bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Gradually add hot milk mixture to egg mixture, stirring constantly with a whisk. Return milk mixture to pan. Cook over medium heat until a thermometer registers 160˚, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Place pan in a large ice-filled bowl for 20 minutes or until egg mixture is cool, stirring occasionally.

Pour milk mixture through a fine sieve in the freezer of an ice cream freezer; discard solids.

Freeze according to manufacturer's instructions. Spoon ice cream into a freezer-safe container; cover and freeze 3 hours or until firm.

And this is where the fun started. It only took about 20 minutes of playing with the ball in the yard to get the ice cream to freeze, and it ended up more solid than homemade ice cream done in a traditional freezer usually does. We stopped once to scrape the sides down like the ball's instructions recommended.

Bert got a kick out of rolling it down the hill.

And rolling it back up.

And down again.

And then he was done.

Ready to scoop!

Ready to eat!

Does this face say "delicious" to you?

The ice cream tasted great, and we got to work a bit of it off before we chowed down. We were surprised how firm the ice cream got in the ball, and that it only took about 20 minutes since the instructions said 30 to 35 minutes. But no complaints here for getting our ice cream faster than we expected!

1 comment:

  1. I often wondered how well those things worked.

    Sadly, though I got an ice cream maker attachment for my mixer this year, I've only used it once. It seems daunting to use heavy cream to make ice cream, yet I'd easily buy and eat it from the store. :)


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