The Best Days of Our Lives

Regardless of whether you are 3 or 63, summer is almost always a wonderful time of the year. Long vacations, visits to the beach, picnics, sitting out on the porch, barbecues, tons of ice cream and milkshakes…

Unfortunately we can’t enjoy all of those things year round, but ice cream is the kind of treat you can devour as often as you want. This is the first summer that I have been a blogger, so I was surprised by how many bloggers actually made homemade ice cream….and of course, I was very tempted to do it myself.

It took me awhile, and the influence of a dear newcomer in my life who loves ice cream even more than I do, but even though summer is quickly coming to an end, I have finally made this incredible tasty treat.

The best thing about this recipe, is it does not require an ice cream maker. YOU are the ice cream maker so anyone like myself, who has not yet invested in one of these can make it.

Vanilla Ice Cream
Source: David Lebovitz

1 cup milk
A pinch of salt
3/4 cups sugar
1 vanilla bean
5 egg yolks
2 cup heavy cream
A few drops of vanilla extract

Heat the milk, salt, and sugar in a saucepan. Split the vanilla bean lengthwise and scrape the seeds into the milk with the tip of a paring knife. Add the bean pod to the milk.

Stir together the egg yolks in a bowl and gradually add some of the warmed milk, stirring constantly as you pour. Pour the warmed yolks back into the saucepan.

Cook over low heat, stirring constantly and scraping the bottom with a heat-resistant spatula until the custard thickens enough to coat the spatula. Strain the custard into the heavy cream. Rinse the vanilla bean and put it back into the custard and cream to continue steeping. Pour into a deep baking dish, or bowl made of plastic, stainless steel or something durable and chill over an ice bath.

After forty-five minutes, open the freezer and check it. As it starts to freeze near the edges, remove it from the freezer and stir it vigorously with a beater, spatula or whisk. Really beat it up and break up any frozen sections. Return to freezer. Continue to check the mixture every 30 minutes, stirring vigorously as it’s freezing.

Keep checking on your ice cream and stirring while it freezes (by hand or with the electric mixer) until the ice cream is frozen. It will likely take 2-3 hours to be ready.

When it reaches the desired consistency, serve as always. Enjoy.

Anyone with a machine can make this themselves, just follow this recipe and when you get to the freezing process, finish up with the machine.

Hope you have enjoyed your summer as much as I have, and have treated yourself to plenty of ice cream.  Don’t forget, even if it’s snowing outside you can still enjoy this treat and think of past summers 🙂

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