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Vanilla-Custard Ice Cream Base

Use this base to make Fresh-Fig and Chocolate-Chunk Ice Cream, Caramelized Peach Ice Cream, and Black Plum, Port, and Cinnamon Ice Cream.

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Yield: Makes about 1 1/2 pints
Vanilla-Custard Ice Cream Base

Source: Martha Stewart Living, July 2013

Ingredients

  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
  • 6 large egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt

Directions

  1. Combine milk and cream in a medium saucepan. Add vanilla seeds and pod. Bring mixture to a simmer over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally; remove from heat.

  2. Whisk together egg yolks, sugar, and salt in a large bowl. Gradually whisk in half of milk mixture. Pour egg-milk mixture back into pan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon, 6 to 8 minutes.

  3. Pour custard through a fine sieve into a bowl set in a larger bowl of ice water; discard vanilla pod. Let cool, stirring occasionally. Cover and refrigerate until cold, at least 1 hour; custard base can be refrigerated up to 2 days ahead.

Reviews (3)

  • jenheideman 15 Sep, 2014

    This is a great basic recipe for vanilla ice cream. The directions are fine. The people who had a problem with their eggs did not add the milk mixture "gradually" enough. The process that is described is called "tempering", and is absolutely necessary to make sure that the eggs do not curdle. Just add about a tablespoon or two at a time (stirring between additions) until half of the cream mixture is added to the egg mixture, and you should be fine.

  • misschanandaler 4 Apr, 2014

    I would like to preface that I am not a novice cook.

    I had high hopes for this recipe because it was simple but this recipe and its instructions are horrible. I just wasted six eggs and a bunch of heavy cream/vanilla. The medium heat is too high and curdled the previously silky egg yolk/milk mixture. I am beyond angry at the waste of my ingredients and time. I have been disappointed by this website's recipes one too many times.

  • Laura Sezonov 21 Sep, 2013

    This is an easy recipe , however it curdles if you follow these directions. The heat recommended is too high and it will cause your custard to separate and curdle. I think the recipe needs some more detail or correction on the heat component to prevent this common problem from happening. I think I will try another method.

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