DIY When It’s HOT: How To Make All Natural Ice Cream
As the days go by, it gets hotter and hotter. With temperatures almost in the triple digits in many places around the country, I, like everyone else, crave a good ol’ fashion refreshment to cool me down. My local ice cream shop is consistently packed with lines around the corner on any given day. On most days it’s a deterrent as I’d rather not have to travel in the heat to stand in a long line for a cone. I also do not care for the expensive and chemical-filled store-bought variety either (say no to red dye 40!). With that being said, I decided to look for a way to indulge in my ice cream passions at home.
Most recipes typically require that you have an an expensive ice cream maker with a freezing chamber that has been pre-frozen for at least 24 hours. I, for one, do not have the money nor the patience for all of that. In deconstructing what makes ice cream great, I broke it down to a few simple components to make creating my own concoction a less than daunting task: air, significantly low temperatures, fat and sugar.
So, ladies and gentlemen, I present to you homemade ice cream that you can customize to your heart’s desire and that is ready to scoop in just six hours. Here’s what you need:
14 oz sweetened condensed milk
1 pint of heavy whipping cream (chilled)
2 tablespoons of alcohol
1 tablespoon of flavoring extract
Two mixing bowls
Hand mixer or large whisk
- Empty out the condensed milk into a bowl.
- Add in your two tablespoons of alcohol. The point of alcohol in this recipe is to lower the freezing point of your ice cream so that you’re able to scoop it.
Here’s where you can get fancy. Since this is the base for your ice cream, you can flavor it as you like. I made a vanilla bean flavor and the alcohol I used was bourbon. I also made a lemon flavor and I used a bit of limoncello and grated in lemon zest. Be adventurous with your flavor pairings.
- Add in one tablespoon of your extract. I urge you to use the best quality ingredients you can find. Imitation extract is a sham and will leave your ice cream tasting a little off.
- In a separate bowl – pour out the contents of your heavy whipping cream – and with a hand mixer (or well-fueled elbow grease), whip the cream until it doubles in size and is light and fluffy. Be careful not to over whip or you will begin to churn butter instead of ice cream.
- Gently fold the whipped cream into your condensed milk base. By fold, I mean to be light. Remember, we don’t want to deflate any of that air we worked so hard to incorporate.
Once your ingredients are combined, you should have a creamy but light bowl of ice cream. Gently pour this into a loaf pan or freezer-safe container of your choice and let it refrigerate for at least six hours — at the most, overnight. Here’s how mine looked before freezing:
And here’s how it turned out:
And there you have it! Homemade, natural goodness to stave off this heat. Below are some notes on flavor variations.
Berries and fruits:
The rule of thumb here is to create a puree. I suggest cooking down your fruit (after cutting and deseeding) with a teaspoon of sugar to remove the water in it, otherwise you’d be introducing all of that water into your ice cream. Another alternative is using dried fruit that’s been chopped up to put in your base.
Cookies and candy:
These can be broken up and lightly folded in your finished mix before pouring to freeze it.
I hope you get to try this as the weekend begins! Let me know what kind of flavor pairing ideas you have below.