Today I'm introducing you to Ice Cream Fridays. Every Friday during the next few months (or until I get tired of it) you can look forward to a new ice cream recipe which will hopefully inspire you to break out your old dust covered ice cream maker that is hiding somewhere in a closet (yes, I'm talking about you). Since I'm always looking for inspiration and ideas, feel free to leave me a comment here on my blog or on my facebook page, and let me know what ice cream flavor you would like to see. Who knows, you might just get lucky and it will be featured the following week.
To kick this series off I chose Oatmeal-Raisin Ice Cream, which is another amazing recipe from the incomparable David Lebovitz. This ice cream is so delicious, that once you have your first bite you might never consider eating any other frozen confection.
There are practically three components to this ice cream, but all of them are easy enough that you can work ahead and let them hang out for a few hours if needed. First you have your plumped up raisins, then the oatmeal praline and last but not least your ice cream base. Even though this recipe is more labor intensive then vanilla ice cream, I didn't mind the work. I made the oatmeal praline first, then started on the raisins, and while those got nice and fat I worked on the custard which then had to cool for a few hours before churning everything in my ice cream maker.
This ice cream took us all by surprise, and is probably one of the best ice creams I have had in the last year. It tasted just like an oatmeal raisin cookie but in ice cream form. My husband couldn't get enough of this one, and I'm already planning on making another batch soon. Please give this one a try, you won't regret it!
Oatmeal Raisin Ice Cream
(adapted from The Perfect Scoop)
1/4 cup (60 ml) water
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup (80 g) raisins
2 teaspoons dark rum
1 cup (250 ml) whole milk
1/2 cup (100 g) granulated sugar
Pinch of salt
2 cups (500 ml) heavy cream
1/3 cup (70 g) packed light brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
5 large egg yolks
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Oatmeal Praline (Recipe to follow)
To prepare the raisins, heat the water and sugar in a small saucepan. Add the raisins and cook over low heat, stirring frequently, until all but about 2 tablespoons of the syrup has been absorbed, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the rum.
To make the ice cream, warm the milk, granulated sugar, and salt in a medium saucepan. Whisk the cream, brown sugar, and cinnamon together into a large bowl and set a mesh strainer on top.
In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks. Slowly pour the warm milk mixture into the egg yolks, whisking constantly, then scrape the warmed egg yolks back into the saucepan.
Stir the mixture constantly over medium heat with a heatproof spatula, scraping the bottom as your stir, until the mixture thickens and coats the spatula. Pour the custard through the strainer and stir it into the cream. Mix in the vanilla and stir until cool over an ice bath.
Chill the mixture thoroughly in the refrigerator, then freeze it in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions. During the last few minutes of churning, add the raisins and Oatmeal Praline.
(makes 1 cup)
3/4 cup (75 g) rolled oats (not instant)
1/2 cup (100 g) sugar
Pinch of coarse salt
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Line a baking sheet with foil, spread the oats evenly on the sheet, and bake for 10 minutes, stirring once or twice while baking, until the oats are fragrant and nicely toasted. Remove from the oven.
Spread the sugar in a medium, heavy-bottomed skilled and cook over medium heat, watching it carefully. When it begins to liquefy and darken at the edges, use a heatproof spatula to stir it very gently, encouraging the heat of the liquefied sugar around the edges to moisten and melt the sugar crystals in the center.
Tilt the pan and stir gently until all the sugar is melted and the caramel begins to smoke. Once the mixture is deep golden, remove it from the heat and immediately add the oats to the skillet (lift the foil to guide them in quickly). Return the foil to the baking sheet.
Stir the oats gently but quickly, coating them with the caramel. Scrape the oats onto the foil-lined baking sheet and spread them as well as possible. Sprinkle with the salt and let cool completely. Once firm, break the pralined oats into small pieces by pulsing them in a food processor or placing the pieces in a heavy-duty plastic bag and smacking them with a mallet or rolling pin.