24 August 2017

How to Make Ice Cream

...without an ice cream maker.

You'll need:

1 14-oz. can sweetened condensed milk (not evaporated milk)

2 pints heavy cream or whipping cream (do not use whipped cream or Cool Whip)

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Pour the can of sweetened condensed milk into a large bowl. Stir in vanilla extract. In another large bowl, beat the heavy cream until stiff peaks form, then mix it into the bowl with the sweetened condensed milk and vanilla. Stir the ingredients together until well mixed. (Do this very gently, or else the whipped cream will deflate.)  Pour into a large container (a loaf pan works well) and cover with aluminum foil. Freeze 6-8 hours or overnight.

You can adapt this recipe to make almost any flavor you want. Here are a few I’ve tried:

Chocolate: Add 5+ tablespoons of cocoa powder to the heavy cream-sweetened condensed milk mixture before freezing (more if you like it super chocolate-y). Make sure it’s well mixed so your ice cream doesn’t have lumps of powder in it. Hershey's syrup might work too, although I haven't tried that myself.

Strawberry: Make the plain vanilla recipe, and add 1 cup finely chopped fresh or frozen thawed strawberries to the ice cream before freezing. (Mix it up a bit with some sugar first so that the strawberries make a sweet juice.) One caveat: the water content of strawberries and strawberry juice is very high and might give the ice cream an icy texture.

Mint: Add 1 tsp. peppermint extract or 2-3 drops of peppermint oil to ice cream before freezing; stir well. If using peppermint oil, be super careful not to overdo it -- it is extremely strong! (Chocolate chips or crushed candy canes are good in this one.)

You can add maple syrup, nuts, cookie dough, crushed candy, fruit - pretty much anything. Make sure to chop everything up small; big pieces will sink to the bottom of the pan. You might want to stir the mix a couple of times while it's freezing. Obviously, don't worry about precise measurements; go by your own taste and preference.

Warning: This ice cream is extremely rich. Seriously, it makes Häagen-Dazs look like diet food. But, it is really good. (And if you are on a diet, you can say goodbye to it now!)

Another Warning: This ice cream will freeze rock solid. This is because it's not full of guar gum and xanthan gum and carrageenan and heaven only knows what else, like store ice cream. (That's a good thing.) It will just need a few extra minutes out of the freezer to soften.

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