When we first opened the Creamery, we featured two different coffee flavors in our case: plain Coffee as well as Coffee Toffee, which was the plain coffee base with almond toffee bits folded in. The crunchy Coffee Toffee became so popular that we eventually took the plain version out of rotation.
The strength of flavor can also be intensified or lightened by extending or shortening your steeping time, respectively.
At a glance
Technique: Ice cream (see below)
Special equipment: Ice cream machine
Infusing and Chilling time: 2 hours or overnight
Shelf life: 1 week
1 3/4 cups heavy cream
3/4 cup 1% or 2% milk
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup (3/4 ounce) finely ground coffee
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
5 large egg yolks
Infuse the milk/cream
1. In a nonreactive heavy saucepan, stir together the cream, milk, half of the sugar (1?4 cup), coffee, and salt.
2. Put the pan over medium-high heat. When the mixture just begins to bubble around the edges, remove from the heat and cover the pan. Let steep for about 10 minutes, or until the cream has taken on a strong coffee flavor. (Stir occasionally and taste it to monitor the progress.)
Make the base
3. In a medium heatproof bowl, whisk the yolks just to break them up, then whisk in the remaining half of the sugar (1?4 cup). Uncover the cream mixture and put the pan over medium heat.
4. Carefully scoop out about 1?2 cup of the hot cream mixture and, whisking the eggs constantly, add the cream to the bowl with the egg yolks. Repeat, adding another 1?2 cup of the hot cream to the bowl with the yolks. Using a heatproof rubber spatula, stir the cream in the saucepan as you slowly pour the egg-and-cream mixture from the bowl into the pan.
5. Cook the mixture carefully over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it is thickened, coats the back of a spatula, and holds a clear path when you run your finger across the spatula, 3 minutes longer.
6. Strain the base through a fine-mesh strainer into a clean container. Set the container into an ice-water bath, wash your spatula, and use it to stir the base occasionally until it is cool. Remove the container from the ice-water bath, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate the base for at least 2 hours or overnight. Freeze the ice cream.
7. Freeze in your ice cream machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions. While the ice cream is churning, put the container you’ll use to store the ice cream into the freezer. Enjoy right away or, for a firmer ice cream, transfer to the chilled container and freeze for at least 4 hours.
Ice Cream Master Instructions
The instructions given here are for a basic ice cream. Recipes in this book may have additional or modified steps, depending on the flavor.
Liquid and dry measuring cups
Medium heatproof bowl
Medium (3- or 4-quart) nonreactive saucepan
Wooden spoon (optional)
Heatproof rubber spatula
Another heatproof bowl or other container for the cooked base
A large bowl of ice water (big enough to comfortably hold the container of cooked base)
Ice cream machine with at least a 11?2-quart capacity
1% or 2% milk
Gather all necessary equipment and set out and measure all your ingredients. In a large bowl, make an ice water bath.
Make the Base
1. Put the egg yolks in a medium heatproof bowl and whisk just long enough to break them up. Add half of the sugar and whisk just until blended. Set aside. (Adding some of the sugar to the eggs dilutes them a bit and helps prevent them from scrambling when you add the hot cream.)
2. In a medium nonreactive saucepan, stir together the milk, cream, the remaining half of the sugar, and the salt. (Heating the rest of the sugar with the cream helps it dissolve faster.)
3. Put the pan over medium-high heat. Stir occasionally and watch closely as the cream heats up (it can boil over easily). You want to bring it just to the brink of simmering. A few things will happen that will tell you you’re getting close: bubbles will form and break along the edge of the pan, and then you’ll notice that the mixture will seem to swell slightly.
4. When the mixture approaches a simmer, reduce the heat to medium. (It’s not the end of the world if it does come to a simmer or even a boil at this point, but it’s not necessary.)
5. With a measuring cup or a ladle, carefully scoop out about 1?2 cup of the hot cream mixture and, whisking the eggs constantly, add the cream to the bowl with the egg yolks. Repeat, adding another 1?2 cup of the hot cream to the bowl with the egg yolks. The purpose of this step is to gently heat the egg yolks (also known as “tempering” them), which reduces the risk of overcooking them.
6. Return your attention to the saucepan. Using a heatproof rubber spatula or wooden spoon, stir the cream as you slowly pour the cream-and-egg-yolk mixture from the bowl into the pan. Continue to cook on medium heat, stirring constantly with the spatula in a figure-eight pattern to make sure that you’re covering the entire bottom of the pan. Pay close attention to the consistency as the base cooks, as it can change quickly and dramatically. Your goal is to have it go from the consistency of heavy cream to that of a thinnish puréed soup, but no thicker. You’ll notice that the mixture will start to thicken slightly and you’ll feel a little more resistance as you stir.
7. Test the readiness by removing the spatula from the saucepan and dragging your finger across it. If the base coats the back of the spatula, and the path created by your finger holds for a second or two (that is, the base doesn’t immediately start running down the side of the spatula), it’s ready. You can also try this test using a wooden spoon. It can be easier to judge the doneness of a light colored base against the dark background of a wooden spoon.
8. As soon as the base has reached the correct consistency, remove the pan from the heat and immediately pour the base through the fine-mesh strainer and into a clean bowl or large Pyrex measuring cup. The base will continue to cook and thicken in the pan even after it has been removed from the burner, which is why it’s important to act quickly once it reaches the right consistency. Now wash your spatula.
Chill the Base
9. Set the bowl or measuring cup containing the base into the ice-water bath and stir frequently with the clean spatula until cool. Remove from the ice-water bath, cover with plastic wrap, and chill the mixture until completely cold, at least 2 hours but ideally overnight.
Freeze the Ice Cream
10. Once the base is thoroughly chilled, freeze it in your ice cream machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
How will you know when it’s ready?
You should stop churning when the ice cream reaches the consistency of soft-serve ice cream, or once it has a smooth consistency and the paddles creates a distinct path in its wake. The exact timing varies from one machine to the next. It will firm up in the freezer. In any case, be careful not to overchurn the ice cream, which can cause the butterfat to separate out, producing an unpleasant texture. There is no way to fix an overchurned ice cream, so be careful to keep an eye on it as it approaches the finished stage.
If you’re using any mix-ins like chopped nuts or grated chocolate, add them in the last minute or so of churning, or fold them in by hand once you turn off the machine. (Work quickly so that the ice cream doesn’t melt!)
11. Enjoy the ice cream right away, or transfer it to a chilled storage container and store it in the freezer for up to a week. Any longer than that and the flavors will start to diminish.
Excerpted from Sweet Cream and Sugar Cones by Kris Hoogerhyde, Anne Walker and Dabney Gough. Copyright © 2012 by Kris Hoogerhyde, Anne Walker and Dabney Gough. Photographs Copyright © 2012 by Paige Green. Excerpted by permission of Ten Speed Press, a division of Random House of Canada Limited. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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