It is truly amazing how dependent people can become on a simple morning beverage, most often coffee. Some people can’t even function when they wake up until they have had a cup . . . or two or three. Personally, I do not understand this addiction because I detest plain coffee.
However, I do love hot tea and can understand the reliance on a routine morning drink. During the school year, I rarely leave home without a travel mug full of earl grey tea. Maybe it’s simply a habitual action, the comfort of a warm beverage, or that welcome perk from a dose of caffeine.
Despite an opposition to your typical cup of coffee, I love the flavor of it. This coffee bean ice cream allows the beans to infuse into the cream, creating a delightful coffee flavor and a subtle coffee hue. The resulting ice cream is smooth and decadent, although a handful of chopped nuts or chocolate pieces at the end would add a welcome new dimension.
The custard can be a bit of challenge if you have never made one before, but as long as the eggs are tempered correctly the ice cream will still turn our wonderfully. I find it helpful to have all of my ingredients and containers ready to go before I start, so I don’t have to abandon the pan and risk burning the cream.
Coffee Bean Ice Cream
From Sorbets and Ice Creams, by Lou Seibert Pappas
Makes 1 quart
6 tablespoons coffee beans, or 3 tablespoons freeze-dried coffee granules
2 cups half-and-half
2/3 cup sugar
6 egg yolks, beaten
1 cup heavy (whipping) cream
1. In a double boiler, combine the coffee beans and half-and-half. Heat over barely simmering water for 30 to 40 minutes, or until the coffee flavor is pronounced to your liking. Whisk the sugar into the egg yolks. Whisk in some of the hot half-and-half mixture, return this mixture to the pan, and cook over barely simmering water, stirring constantly, until the custard coats the spoon. Immediately place the pan in a pan of cold water and stir to cool to room temperature.
2. Strain the custard base into a container and discard the beans. Stir in the cream. Cover and refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours, or until thoroughly chilled. Freeze in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions (mine took about 20 minutes).