In summer, all I want is cold and creamy ice cream. Coffee ice cream is one of my favorite flavors, and echos how I drink the hot stuff, light and sweet. I tend to like my ice cream plain (it’s a textural thing), but if you like mix-ins, chopped dark chocolate, toffee pieces, fleur de sel praline, or chocolate covered coffee beans would be a natural fit.
Coffee Ice Cream Recipe
2 cups heavy cream
1 cup whole milk (or 1/3 cup half and half, 2/3 cup lowfat milk)
3/4 cup sugar
5 egg yolks
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp instant espresso* (I use Medaglia d’Oro)
1 tsp ground fresh coffee (for color and visual texture)
Whisk together the egg yolks and half of the sugar in a medium sized bowl.
Combine the other half of the sugar with the milk and cream in a heavy bottomed sauce pan and heat until just below a simmer. Whisk in the instant coffee until it is dissolved.
Take about a cup of the hot cream/milk mixture and whisk it into the bowl with the eggs to temper them. Whisk the egg/milk mixture back into the pot with the cream and cook over a low heat until thickened. You are making custard. Do not let it boil or you will have scrambled eggs in your cream!
When thick (about 5 minutes), remove from the heat pour though a fine mesh strainer into a bowl set over ice water. This stops the cooking process and helps the custard cool quickly. Whisk in the vanilla once cool. Chill in the refrigerator until very cold.
Freeze according to your ice cream maker’s instructions and at the end mix in 1 tsp of finely ground coffee.
*If you’re wondering why I used instant espresso (Medaglia d’Oro) instead of fresh coffee it’s because I like the way it dissolves completely. I didn’t want to add in brewed coffee because I thought the liquid would change the texture of the ice cream. I’ve seen recipes which infuse the cream with coffee beans but have not tried it. Also, a tiny jar of this goes a long way and is great when you want to put a coffee flavor in chocolate baked goods, like this salted caramel chocolate cake.