heart, brain, tummy + turbinado walnut ice cream

by Chen

Heart desires. Brain meditates. Tummy, you know, digests.

My heart told me that (1) it was too hot in LA (2) she (ok, I) wanted ice cream (3) I’d better do something with my ice cream machine. I bought it at least four months ago and my very first experiment sadly failed.

My brain thought that in addition to making cooked-custard-based ice cream this time, using turbinado sugar or unrefined raw sugar instead of plain white sugar might be a good idea. It was not only healthy but also providing a complex caramel-like flavor. For extra texture and taste, some toasted walnuts would do.

Finally, it worked this time. The ice cream was not only delicious; it was “scoopable” even after hours in the freezer.

My tummy was certainly satisfied.

turbinado walnut ice cream
Makes about 3/4 quart

1 cup heavy cream
1 cup milk
2 egg yolks
1/3 cup turbinado sugar (light brown sugar may work too)
1 tbsp cornstarch
1/4 cup walnuts, toasted and finely chopped
unsweetened cocoa powder for dusting

Most ice cream makers require freezing the inner bowl overnight. So do this ahead.

In a pot, combine the cream and milk and reserve 2 tbsp mixture for later use.

Whisk together egg yolks, sugar, cornstarch, and reserved cream-milk mixture in a bowl until smooth. Set aside.

Heat the cream-milk mixture over medium-low heat. As soon as it comes to a simmer, remove from the heat. Temper the egg mixture by adding 1/4 cup hot cream to the bowl and whisk, then 1/4 cup more and whisk. Then pour all the egg mixture back to the pot to the cream.

Return the pot to low heat. Stir frequently until the mixture is thickened and can coat a wooden spoon. Turn off the heat.

Strain the mixture to a bowl or container. Let it cool to room temperature then refrigerate until completely chilled. I’d like to keep it there overnight.

For the last step, follow the manufacturer directions for the ice cream maker. When the base gets the soft-serve consistency, add the chopped walnuts. Freeze and enjoy with some cocoa powder dusted on the top.