November 11, 2009

Pumpkin & Cinnamon Ice Cream

2 cups milk
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup sugar, divided use
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
4 egg yolks
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 sticks cinnamon

In a large pot over medium heat, whisk together 1/4 cup sugar, milk and cream until the sugar dissolves and the mixture almost boils, about 2-3 minutes. Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, whisk together 1/4 cup sugar, salt and the egg yolks until it forms a ribbon and is yellow and creamy, about 2 minutes. Add about a 1/2 cup of the cream mixture into the eggs and whisk to combine. Pour the egg/cream mixture into the cream mixture on the stove. Add the cinnamon sticks and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 8 minutes or until the mixture coats the back of a spoon.

Allow to cool on the counter then cover and place in the refrigerator to cool completely or overnight. Then remove the cinnamon sticks, stir in the pumpkin. Pour through a fine mesh sieve into an ice cream maker (I use this one) and churn until cold and set. Place in a freezer-safe container and freeze until solid.

My thoughts:
I love making ice cream because I can make it exactly as I'd like it. Not too sweet and unless it is chocolate, more subtle tasting than most commercial ice creams. This ice cream fits the bill perfectly. While the ice cream itself is rich and custard-y, the pumpkin flavor is light and fruity. Using cinnamon sticks infuses the ice cream with just the right amount of spice and none of the gritty texture ground spices can give ice cream. I loved it. A great alternative to serving vanilla ice cream with pie or making pumpkin pie.

It is worth it take a second to whisk it through a sieve before adding it to the ice cream maker just in case any bits of the cinnamon stick or chunks of pumpkin are present.