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If This Turns Out The Board (& My Neighbors) Will Never Hear The End Of It!!

  • j

Caramel pecan ice cream made in a hand cranked White Mountain freezer using pasteurized heavy cream, organic butter, sugar, egg yolks and a half dozen pots and pans to assemble all of this. I'm finding there's a talent to this type of ice cream (making the caramel first, sauteing the chopped pecans in butter, then the base, then combining) that actually rivals making risotto. But the flavor going into the refrigerator was just incredible. Now if I can just nail the texture tomorrow, cranking it by hand with rock salt and ice before repacking and covering with burlap to ripen.

Like seriously good risotto I think most people have never had ice cream on the level I hope this turns out at. This is somewhere north of 30% butterfat!

If I don't post over the weekend please assume that I spoke too soon!

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    AGM/Cape Cod

    Joe, I hope it turns out better than you expect. Also could you post the recipe? Happy 4TH

    1 Reply
    1. re: AGM/Cape Cod

      1. Pecans-saute 1/2 cup coarsely chopped pecans in
      2 tbsp. butter until lightly browned. Set aside.
      2. Caramel-1 1/4 cups heavy cream (not ultrapasteurized, regular pasteurized), 1 1/2 cups sugar, 1 whole stick organic/country butter
      In a heavy bottomed saucepan scald the cream ad keep warm. In another heavy bottom saucepan combine the sugar with 1/2 cup water over medium heat and stir until it dissolves and the liquid is "clear." Turn the heat to high and boil the misture, without stirring, until it is a light to medium amber color. (NOte: this is tricky and the key to correctly made caramel-not to cook this too long.) This took me about 7 or 8 minutes. Remove fro the heat and slowly stir in the heavy cream. Stir until smooth then whisk in the butter (chunks at a time) and let cool.
      3. Ice cream base: 2 cups heavy cream (pasteurized), 1 cup whole milk (NOT 2 or 1%, cream top if available), 6 organic egg yolks, 3/4 cup sugar
      In a heavy bottomed saucepan, scald the cream and the milk. In the top of a double boiler set over simmering water, whisk egg yolks and sugar. Add the scalded cream mixture, turn up the heat until the water is boiling and whisk the mixture continuously until it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the caramel. Then fold in the chooped pecans.
      4. Let cool, then transfer to storage container and refrigerator for 8 hours +.
      5. For a White Mountain freezer pour the cream into the stainless steel cream can. Place this inside the wooden tub. Crush ice into fine particles and place a layer about three inches deep around the can in the tub. Sprinkly 1/2 layer of rock salt on top of this. Repeat with ice and rock salt layers until the freezer is well packed. Turn crank at constant speed until cream is frozen. After 10 minutes or so the cream will noticeably become firmer. Continue for a total of about 20 to 25 minutes until the consistency is one of soft ice cream. Remove the dasher and scrape the excess back into the container.
      6. To pack the ice cream in the container for hardening: place a sheet of wax paper over the top of the container, press the can cover down over this and plug the hole in the top with either a cork stopper or tape. Drain off water in wooden tub and repack with 5 parts of crushed ice and 1 part of rock salt until the entire can and lid are covered with both. Wrap and cover with a burlap bag and let stand until frozen or hard. Probably several hours. An additional hour in a freezer may also follow this depending on the desired hardness.

    2. To imply that hand cranking and use of rock salt produces a better quality ice cream is misleading. If that is the case then everyone should throw out their food processors and go back to chopping by hand.

      As to others not tasting ice cream at this level, what do you think everyone uses in ice cream if not eggs and cream and addins. The whole process is pretty mundane and requires no special talent.

      7 Replies
      1. re: T.Davis

        Of course it does. I can't believe that you would say it doesn't. This goes back a year to pressure cooker risotto and few people ever having had correctly made risotto. Just like risotto this is all about texture which directly influences taste. Sorry, but there's not a store and only a few restaurants in America that will make ice cream like this (or use a motorized crank but still using rock salt and ice and then later packing for hardening). It's a helluva lot of work but produces incredible ice cream.

        1. re: Joe H.

          I agree, not all ice creams are created equal.

          1. re: Joe H.

            Sorry... your aurgument doesn't hold water. I am not talking about store bought ice cream which is really bad generally or even restaurants. All that I am saying is that you are making a mountain out of a moehill. You seem to be hung up on risotta and to think that risotta has any relationship to ice cream is absurb. To think that hand cranking and rock salt adds some mystic layer to texture or taste is astounding. What I really think the damage caused by your announcements are that you are going to turn a lot of first time ice cream makers off to how good a ice cream you can make using an average ice cream purchased machine. I consider your attempts admirable but more of a hobby or even an artisian approach rather than a practical approach and certainly without any credible basis in fact.

            A person has to be crazy to go back to the past to make ice cream. A person may as well go all the way back and get a cow to start.

            1. re: T.Davis

              Perhaps the difference between what I have made and what you consider as ice cream is the same difference between risotto and risotta. We're talking about things on two different levels. After tasting three or four bites of this, sir, there's a part of life that you don't even have the vaguest idea exists. There's a level of taste beyond your understanding and this is your loss. Anyway, you've never tasted my ice cream nor my gorgonzola dolce risotto so how could you know just how much lesser what your used to eating is? Or are you simply the type of person who prefers hamburger stroganoff from a box to real beef stroganoff? It's not a problem. Many people have grown up like this and never had the real thing.
              I should also tell you that I've crossed oceans just for one meal so we each have our own values and priorities. I believe that I have just made the best ice cream that I have ever tasted. After four or five bites and a tremendous amount of work it was worth it. I'm just sorry that you don't appreciate certain things that really are worth the investment of time, effort and money. Others, such as myself, do.
              By the way, your comment about cows is well taken. Guernsey cows have richer milk and cream. I have made ice cream using this before ("Golden Guernsey") and it is incredible. This is why in the recipe I posted I specified pasteurized cream and milk-NOT ultrapasteurized. If I could have raised the cow myself I would have. There are chefs who do this, you know. Obsessive chefs who seek out artisan sources that produce unbelievably good products or grow their own herbs, even operate their own farms. Going the extra mile or two or ten makes a difference. Anyway, I don't think you understand any of what I'm talking about and I just feel that one day you'll taste something so unbelievably delicious, so much better than anything else of its kind that then many be you'll understand the extra effort. Meanwhile, I'm going to have another bite...

              1. re: Joe H.

                Somehow you have found something that nobody else knew existed. Gee... where have we been all this time. I started making ice cream 25 years ago using a hand crank and rock salt... not yesterday like you did.

                What I am saying is that hand cranking and rock salt add nothing to the process. If hand cranking is so great then why don't we go back to pedal pusher cars instead of automated ones.

                Now if you don't mind, I am going to go and make my favorite ice cream... hamburger stroganoff ice cream.

                1. re: T.Davis

                  I'm using a thirty year old White Mountain two quart hand cranked freezer. That is when I first bought it and started using it-1973.

                  1. re: Joe H.

                    It appears that both of you have already made your respective points in this debate. We suggest that this discussion be left at that. Do move on to other chow topics.

                    Many thanks!

        2. Good Luck. I worry you may have too much butterfat and will end up with frozen caramel pecan butter rather than ice cream.

          1. After setting overnight in the refrigerator the flavors have melded together and deepened. Best flavor I've ever had in ice cream. Now to crank.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Joe H.
              o
              Olympia Jane

              I'll crank for you, Joe, in exchange for the privilege of licking those caramelized ice cream paddles. I am a real cranky chick. Do you live anywhere near Olympia, Washington? Preferably on Puget Sound? I could paddle on over, the kayak's still on the beach from this morning's spin out to the middle of the bay.

              1. re: Olympia Jane

                Washington, yes!!!!!

                washington, d.c. unfortunately......actually Reston, VA

                but thanks for the thought!

            2. Sounds like another delicate dish full of subtlety. When's the bodyscan?

              4 Replies
              1. re: Cymbiosis

                That's not ice cream you're making, it's frozen custard.

                1. re: MobyRichard

                  It's ice cream inspired by Kopp's caramel pecan (of Milwaukee) that I'm trying my best to outdo. Straight out of the stainless steel container after cranking for 30 minutes it IS better. Now to harden for a couple of hours.

                  1. re: Joe H.

                    Joe, I'm just saying; if you're putting eggs in, your product passes out of the realm of ice cream and becomes frozen custard.

                    1. re: MobyRichard

                      Well, after two hours of "hardening" it is now as hard as ice cream yet with an incredible creamy texture. It IS ice cream not frozen custard. It is also the best ice cream I have ever tasted, certainly the richest.