National Ice Cream Month Part 1: Dark Chocolate Dreaming

Mmmm… Ice cream. This cool comforting concoction has a whole month (as well as a day– this year’s being July 17th) dedicated to its deliciousness. I now have a whole hearted reason to make, share, and indulge in an abnormally large amount of this creamy treat.

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While I can’t exactly pin point when my love for ice cream began, in 2010 I embarked on a culinary gelato adventure in Italy. This of course involved conversing with many shop owners on technique while consuming endless cones of limone e fragola gelato. Northern and Southern Italy have differing methods, but even more so, they are not exactly ice cream. So I took these knowledgable tips with me to create cold desserts in a variety of ways, spending over 24 hours making over 5 different varieties of frozen treats.

I mean, when in Rome, or er- well, Dorf Tirol, you make lots-of-gelato, not ice cream. Overall that boils down to using more sugar (thereby lowering the freezing point) and less fat in a warmer climate. However, fast forward six years in the future with an ice cream maker begging to be used, (hooray for not having to hand churn every hour!) I was game to embark on another culinary adventure upping the fat, reducing the sugar, and keeping my equipment and storage extra chilled.

The first weekend of this sweet month called for facing a fear and trying to make (for only the second time in my life) my favorite flavor, but one I haven’t mastered quite yet– Chocolate. I started with this recipe.  Adapted a few things and mixed a few chocolates:

While you could follow the link above here is the step by step review of my deviations from the recipe:

  1. Set the ice cream maker canister in the freezer more than 24 hours in advanced
  2. Chop 2-2.5 bars of your favorite chocolate (70-75%)- aka Chocolate and Lindt
  3. If you don’t want to set up a double boiler out of sheer laziness, set the chopped chocolate in a microwave safe bowl and microwave for about 45 seconds or until melted. “Melted” can be deceiving, make sure to remove the bowl and stir, otherwise you’re at risk of burning and destroying two (or more) beautiful bars of chocolate
  4. Set aside beautiful melted chocolate and place just over 2 cups of whole milk and 1/3 of a cup of unsweetened cocoa powder in a saucepan on medium heat until the mixture boils
  5. Both chocolate mixtures should be off the flame while you take a large bowl and mix 7 tablespoons of sugar with 6 large egg yolks. Feel free to hand mix this until smooth.
  6. Add the milk and cocoa powder mixture to the egg and sugar mixture and stir
  7. Now combine all of the delicious things together into a large pot on the stove and stir consistently for about 5 minutes
  8. Once all of these ingredients are melted together, pour the mixture into a large bowl over a larger bowl filled with ice
  9. Heat 6 tablespoons and a splash of water in a clean saucepan until the sugar stirring vigorously until the sugar darkens and caramelizes.
  10. Slowly add 1/4-1/3 (I likely used about 1/3) of a cup of heavy cream to the sugar until the mixture boils
  11. Finally combine all the things! Aka- add the cream and sugar mixture to the chocolate mixtures which should still be over ice
  12. If all the things are about room temperature it is safe to add to the lovely ice cream maker (following lovely ice cream maker’s instructions- I churned the mixture for about 25 minutes before I poured and froze the mixture in an old Tupperware container for another 48 hours).

Then Ta-Da, Chocolate ice cream!

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Overall there are some extra ice crystals on the surface of the ice cream, but it seems smoother after the first scoop. To eliminate this next time I can add some more sugar and whipping even more air into the ice cream to keep it smooth and icy-free. Using chocolate bars and cocoa makes for a very rich, super tasty recipe and definitely worth giving a try ice cream. Let me know if you give it a try, or if you have a favorite chocolate brand out there.

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One response to “National Ice Cream Month Part 1: Dark Chocolate Dreaming

  1. Pingback: National Ice Cream Month Part 2: “Key” Lime Pie Pranking | keepmindscreative·

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