We both have automatic ice cream makers ready to go in our cabinets. Up until now, though, they’ve been just been chilling on the shelves, collecting dust. We were so excited when we each got ours, but after churning one or two varieties of homemade ice cream, for whatever reason the batches just stopped coming. Recently, we’ve come to our senses, brushed off the gadgets, rolled up our sleeves and got to work. It’s summertime for crying out loud! We could be enjoying homemade frozen yogurts, fresh sorbets, and endless ice cream flavors. No more excuses.
To re-institute the fun, we wanted to whip up something slightly different. Generally speaking, we both love rich, buttery ice cream flavors. For Chrystal, a Butter Pecan or caramel anything will do the trick. And Amir loves him some simple, boring vanilla –-Vanilla Bean, French Vanilla, Double Vanilla, Creamy Vanilla, any kind of vanilla will do. There were a couple of bars of dark chocolate in the pantry, and a double chocolate recipe immediately came to mind. This recipe mixes melted chocolate and cocoa powder in order to save one of the bars to add chocolate chunks in the ice cream. If that’s not enough, there were some peanut butter cup pieces thrown in because, well, it seemed like the only logical thing to do. The finished dish had us dancing around the kitchen and kissing our abandoned ice cream makers. Don’t be like us and make yourself lose out on the infinite possibilities that these genius appliances can churn out. Making ice cream actually couldn’t be easier! Dear Cuisinart, we promise to never forsake you again.
Double Chocolate Ice Cream with Peanut Butter Cups – Yields 1 1/2 quarts (inspired by Alton Brown)
3 1/2 ounces dark chocolate (at least 60% cocoa)
2 cups half-and-half
2 cups heavy cream
3 1/2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/4 cups sugar
6 large egg yolks
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup peanut butter cups, chopped
3 1/2 ounces dark chocolate, chopped
1. Melt the whole dark chocolate bar over a double boiler. (Make your own double boiler by setting a heat-resistant, metal dish over a pot of simmer water.) Slowly whisk in half-and-half and heavy cream until well combined. Bring mixture to a simmer, stirring often as it cooks, then remove from heat and set aside.
2. In a small bowl, mix cocoa powder and sugar. Set aside. Meanwhile, whisk egg yolks in a large mixing bowl until their color begins to brighten, approximately two minutes. Slowly add the cocoa-sugar mixture and beat until well combined.
3. Mix in about one-third of the warm chocolate mixture to the eggs and sugar. Once mixed together, scrape the eggy liquid back into the saucepan with the remaining warm ingredients. Over low heat, cook mixture to thicken, stirring frequently. It should reach about 170 to 175 degrees, or be thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature, about 30-45 minutes. Once cool, stir in the vanilla, place in a glass or plastic lidded container and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.
4. When ready, churn cooled mixture in your ice cream maker according to the appliance instructions, about 25-30 minutes. Fold in the peanut butter cups and dark chocolate. Serve immediately or freeze for 4 hours to allow ice cream to firm.
Click HERE for the printable recipe.