I Dream of Ice Cream

Everyone loves ice cream.  Don’t you?  I have never met anyone who doesn’t.  I know I love ice cream, but, sadly, I have not really been able to eat it for about 15 years.  I fall into the lactose intolerant camp and, though I can eat tiny amounts of dairy, I can never indulge in a full serving, even with lactaid.   Usually, I am content with this.  In general, I think it saves me a lot of calories, but when summertime comes and all I can have is sorbet, I get a little sad.  I do love sorbet and it is great when you want some refreshment on a hot day, but sometimes I just really Crave Good Old Fashioned Ice Cream!

Well, enough of my whining.  Even though I can’t eat it, I made this week’s FFwD recipe for Olive Oil Ice Cream, anyway.  I made it for the boys.

The ice cream base was easy to put together.  Instead of using vanilla extract, I decided to use half of a vanilla bean.  I love those little black flecks.  They make me feel fancy.

I did worry that I had heated it up too much.  The recipe says to not let it go above 180 and mine was definitely over 180 when I checked, but I forged ahead.

We always have a great time making ice cream.  Our ice cream maker is kind of an old model.  It’s not the really old kind where you have to get the rock salt, but it’s also not electric.  We have the freezer bowl thingy that most electric ones come with, but we have to turn the paddle ourselves.  It’s fun and easy and great entertainment to watch it freeze right before your very eyes.  Plus, we can hear ourselves talk.

It froze beautifully and had a wonderfully silky texture.  It’s been a while since I did an ice cream base with egg yolks, so I forgot how lovely they feel on the tongue.  The olive oil is subtle and is more of an aftertaste, I thought.  The boys declared it the best ice cream they had ever had.  I had just a tiny bit and had to agree that it was really good.

The silky texture of the ice cream caused me to wonder if this technique would taste good in a dairy free version?  Hmm…

Since I do not like being left out of the ice cream party, I went back into the kitchen and made up a dairy free version, sort of.  I meant to make the same flavor to compare, but you know, something happened on the way and I got a little sidetracked.  Instead of a dairy free olive oil ice cream, I ended up with a dairy free caramel sea salt ice cream.  Yum!

The easiest way to make a small amount of caramel:  Just throw some sugar in a pot.

Heat it up over medium heat until it begins to melt.

Once most of it is melted and it is beginning to turn amber, begin stirring with a heatproof spatula.  Stir until it is caramel colored.  Do not step away from the pan here!  I will eat burnt caramel because I don’t mind it, but some people do, so it’s worth it to watch it carefully.

Pour your liquid in slowly from the side.  The caramel will turn hard, but them will melt into the milk as it heats up.

The rest of the ice cream pretty much followed the same steps as a regular custard ice cream, except I used a combination of coconut milk and my favorite soy milk creamer.  Oh, and I did not add olive oil at the end.  I added salted butter.  Ahem.  Just because I’m lactose intolerant doesn’t mean I have to deprive myself.

It froze softer than the olive oil ice cream, but scooped out quite well.  It was nice and smooth and had the same silky feeling.  The husband did not like the soy flavor so much, but I didn’t mind.  I thought it was delicious.  I love the slight saltiness with the caramel.  The youngest declared it to be the best ice cream EVER, better than the olive oil (yes, he had just given that honor to the olive oil, but he is, like me, a caramel lover).  Next time, I might try it with all coconut milk, but one can was all I had on hand.

Just for fun, we wondered what would happen if you just added some jam to yogurt and froze it like ice cream.  So, we tried it.  We mixed a cup of my homemade strawberry rhubarb jam with two cups of greek yogurt and threw it in the ice cream maker.  It froze really well in the machine, even though it was non fat yogurt.  Surprisingly, we thought it was not sweet enough, but this could be a function of the jam itself.  I have no photo of this one because it became rock hard after its overnight rest in the freezer, and I was too impatient to post to wait for it.

Now, I think we have enough frozen delights stocked up to keep us going for at least a few days.  It’s supposed to heat up here, so I think we’re going to need it.

Want a recipe so you don’t have to be left out of the party?  Here you go.

Caramel Sea Salt Coconut Soy Cream

2 ounces sugar

1 cup plus 1 tablespoon plain soy creamer

1 13.5 ounce can coconut milk (not the light kind)

1/2 vanilla bean, split, with the seeds scraped out

5 egg yolks

3 ounces dark brown sugar

1/2-1 tsp sea salt

3 Tablespoons salted butter

1.  Make the caramel:  Place sugar in a medium sized saucepan, preferably light colored.  Heat over medium heat until it begins to melt and color.  Stir with a heatproof spatula until all the sugar is melted and is an even caramel color.  Brown is too dark.  Somewhere between honey and iced tea is a good color. (See photo above)  Pour the soy milk carefully in the pot from the side.  It will bubble like mad and the caramel will turn hard.  Continue stirring over medium heat until the caramel has fully dissolved again.

2. Whisk egg yolks and brown sugar in a medium bowl until thick.

3.  Add the coconut milk and vanilla beans, with the pods into the caramel mixture.  Stir and bring to a simmer.  Have ready a medium bowl with a strainer set in it.

4.  Once the liquids are simmering, slowly add 1/2 cup of the hot liquid to the eggs WHILE you are whisking the eggs to temper them.  Once this is done, you can add the rest of the hot liquid in a steady stream while whisking.

5.  Pour all the mixture back into the pot and heat over medium heat, stirring the whole time with a spatula.  Heat until the mixture is a little thickened, about 180 degrees.

6.  Pour the contents of the pot through the strainer into the bowl, letting the liquid drip through.   Add the salt and butter and whisk until combined.  Chill thoroughly in the fridge or ice bath.  It should be less than 50 degrees, colder is better.  After it is chilled, taste and add more salt, if you want.  Cold things tend to need a little more salt.

7.  Freeze in your machine and enjoy!

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Posted on June 8, 2012, in Cooking, French Fridays with Dorie, Recipe and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 19 Comments.

  1. I’m sorry you cannot indulge in ice cream, but you certainly make do with dessert in other
    ways. Everything looks so delicious. I love the photo of your little assistant and the ice
    cream machine. Great shot. Have a happy weekend.

  2. Wow! Caramel & Coconut! Yum! I liked the Olive Oil Ice Cream, but would love yours even more!

  3. Your version of dairy free ice cream looks delicious! Glad you were able to enjoy a creamy treat! Both versions look wonderful! Have a great weekend!

  4. All of your ice creams sound very nice – caramel is always such a nice treat 🙂

  5. That caramel ice cream sounds really yummy! I am always afraid that I’m becoming lactose intolerant because I tend to get a small tummy ache after drinking a glass of milk but it hasn’t affected me more than that yet. I’m keeping my fingers crossed. But it’s good to know that if I do turn out to be, I can make myself some amazing salted caramel ice cream! 🙂

  6. thekitchenlioness

    So much work, I am impressed and I must admit I am a caramel lover as well, I would probably really like your Caramel Coconut ice cream very much, It all sounds so delightful and I love the fact that your kids got involved in the ice cream making process as well. Wonderful!

    Have a good weekend!

  7. I really need to look into more dairy free treats – the coconut milk caramel ice cream sounds unbelievable!

  8. Oh my- I am such a caramel fan that you made my day by sharing this info and the recipe. I am SO going to play around with that -as our ice cream maker is going to enjoy a very busy summer 🙂 So sweet that you made this “for the boys”. Mine all enjoyed this adventure as well and are now asking for some other options. Both Nana and my households enjoyed the adventure of trying olive oil ice cream – we literally had to make and taste it in order to get our heads around it !

  9. The dairy free version looks very good to me and I’m happy to hear that you didn’t want to deprive yourself of this ice cream treat;-) I love those little black flecks of vanilla bean too;-)

  10. I am jealous of the contents of your freezer! And I love your comment about the black flecks of vanilla making you feel fancy – I feel the same way. 🙂

  11. Now I want to try your caramel ice cream. Yum!

  12. You are killing me with these recipes. Now I definitely cant skip any days at the gym with all this good stuff on my list of things to try!

  13. Oh, wow! Both of your ice creams look wonderful. I am so sorry you weren’t able to fully enjoy the olive oil ice cream, but your dairy free version looks so delicious. I am bookmarking it to make it. Thanks for sharing your recipe!

  14. It would be so hard for me to give up ice cream, it’s one of my favorites. I’m so impressed that you still made it for your family, and doubly impressed that you made yourself your own ice cream as well. You can never go wrong with salted caramel!

  15. Oh, my Caramel Sea Salt Coconut sounds amazing! I am glad your boys liked the Olive Oil version!

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