Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Not-So-Rocky Road Ice Cream

Last week I was in Denver visiting my sister. One of the many perks of visiting her is getting to use her kitchen. She has lots of fun kitchen gadgets that I don't have at home, so I take advantage of them when I'm there. This last trip, I put the ice cream maker to work a couple of times. As I've mentioned before, she recently bought Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams at Home, a delicious ice cream cookbook with all sorts of different recipes. Some of her recipe are a bit too out there for me, like beet ice cream, but others sounds delicious. This recipe was definitely a winner.

I have always loved rocky road ice cream, but ever since I was a kid (and I don't really know why I always do this) I pick around the almonds. By the time I get to the bottom of a tub of rocky road, it's just a pile of rejected almond pieces. Go ahead and add some smoked almonds to this ice cream if you absolutely love them, but I was thrilled to finally have rocky road ice cream with all the good parts, but none of the rejects. The praline sauce is a very necessary addition to the rocky road creation. You can make it a few days ahead of time and store it in an airtight container in your fridge. It would also be a great topping for a bowl of store bough ice cream if you don't have the time/resources to make yourself homemade ice cream. If your are also a fan of Jeni Britton Bauer's recipes and like to keep tabs on what's what, this chocolate ice cream recipe is called milkiest chocolate ice cream in the world.

Recipe from Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams at Home

For the Ice Cream:
1 cup whole milk
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon corn starch
3 ounces bittersweet chocolate
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 cup evaporated milk
2/3 cup sugar
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup mini marshmallows

For the Praline Sauce:
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt

To make the praline sauce, combine the cream, sugar, 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla, and salt in a saucepan. Warm over medium-high heat and bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Boil for 7 minutes, until the mixture thickens a little. Remove from heat and mix in the remaining vanilla extract. Allow to cool and place in fridge. This sauce will keep for up to 1 week.

Prepare to make this ice cream by combining 2 tablespoons of the milk with the cornstarch. Mix together to make a smooth slurry and set aside. Chop the chocolate into small pieces and set aside in a medium bowl.

In a medium saucepan, combine the remaining milk, cream, evaporated milk, sugar, and corn syrup. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the cocoa powder and whisk until the mixture is smooth. Continue to boil for 4 minutes.

Remove mixture from heat and slowly mix in cornstarch slurry. Bring back to a boil and cook until the mixture thickens slightly, about 1 minute. Remove from heat.

Slowly whisk the milk mixture into the chocolate pieces. Add the salt and whisk until the chocolate has melted and the texture is smooth. Allow to cool, cover with plastic wrap, and place in fridge until chilled.

To finish the ice cream, churn the mixture in your ice cream maker for 30 minutes, or until thick and creamy. When packing the ice cream, alternate layers of ice cream with praline sauce and marshmallows. Freeze for at least 4 hours, until the ice cream is firm.

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