"Of soup and love, the first is best."
Spanish Proverb

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Buttermilk Ice Cream

I've tried some fabulous homemade ice creams--Dulce de leche, David Lebovitz's chocolate, etc.--but whenever I pull my ice cream maker out of its wintry hold, I'm powerlessly drawn to my recipe for Buttermilk Ice Cream. I'm convinced it's the most incredible frozen homemade confection ever. It's the perfect companion to Summer's berry and fruit desserts: fruit pies, cobblers, and crisps, and it's magnificent with simple sugared berries. Thank you, Smitten Kitchen.

2 cups heavy cream

1 1/4 cup sugar

12 large egg yolks*

2 cups buttermilk

2 teaspoons vanilla or half a vanilla bean, scraped and simmered with the cream

Pinch of salt

In a large, heavy saucepan, combine the heavy cream and one cup of sugar and bring to a simmer over medium heat.
In a large bowl, whisk egg yolks and remaining 1/4 cup of sugar.
Remove the cream mixture from the heat and drizzle a small amount into the yolks, slowly, and whisking constantly to keep the eggs from curdling. Do this a few more times to warm up the yolks before pouring the yolk mixture back into the cream, whisking constantly.
Cook over low heat until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Strain the mixture and whisk in the buttermilk, vanilla, and salt. Cool completely and freeze according manufacturer’s directions.
* I’m going to share with you a little secret: You don’t need to use all of these egg yolks. Oh sure, you can and the results will blow your ice cream-loving mind. However, let’s say you find that you only have six or eight egg yolks on hand, this will also do. The ice cream will be less rich, but still incredibly more rich than anything you can buy at any store.