- 2 cups whole milk
- 1 vanilla bean, halved lengthwise, seeds scraped and reserved
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg
- 4 large egg yolks
- 1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
- 3 tablespoons bourbon
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 1/4 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup heavy cream
Heat milk, vanilla bean and seeds, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat until almost boiling. Remove from heat; cover, and let steep 1 hour.
Reheat milk mixture over medium high heat until almost boiling. Meanwhile, whisk together egg yolks, sugar, bourbon, and salt in a medium bowl. Pour hot milk mixture into yolk mixture in a slow, steady stream, whisking until combined. Clip a candy thermometer onto side of pan; pour milk-yolk mixture into pan, and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until it reaches 140 degrees, about 10 minutes. Pour through a fine sieve into a medium bowl.
Prepare an ice-water bath; set aside. Sprinkle gelatin over 1/4 cup water in a heatproof bowl; let stand until softened, about 5 minutes. Place bowl over a pan of simmering water; stir until gelatin has dissolved. Stir gelatin mixture and vanilla extract into milk-yolk mixture. Place in ice-water bath; stir occasionally until mixture begins to thicken but is not set.
Whisk cream in a medium bowl until soft peaks form. Whisk one-third of the whipped cream into the milk-yolk mixture; using a rubber spatula, gently fold in the remaining whipped cream. Divide mixture among serving cups; refrigerate at least 6 hours or overnight.