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The Better No Machine Ice Cream

August 25, 2013

For the longest time I have refrained from making ice cream since I lack the storage space for an ice cream machine. I often look longingly at ice cream recipes on Tastespotting and pass the ice cream appliances in Bed Bath & Beyond while shedding a lone silent tear. For the sake of storage (and my wallet), I have to be ruthless when deciding whether or not to make any kind of purchase for our kitchen, and I know an ice cream machine just wouldn't see enough use.
Egg shells 
Then I started thinking how people have been making ice cream far before Kitchen-Aid or CuisineArt stepped in to help with the job. The process is a bit more tedious, but in the end you'll end up with a delicious ice cream and guess what? The $70 you would have spent buying an ice cream machine will still be in your pocket. 
This recipe calls for a bucket ton of egg yolks! Maybe it seemed a bit excessive to me since I tripled the recipe-- if I was going to do this by hand I wanted to have a lot of ice cream to show for my efforts. But anyway, you'll have the makings of a beautifully creamy custard before it goes into the freezer. 
In fact I made so much ice cream that normal mixing bowls for the ice bath wouldn't work. I had to get a little creative and use a soup pot and a dutch oven.
The vanilla ice cream recipe cake from David Lebovitz's blog. Oh how I love that man! What I would give to be his best friend that he bakes for. I'm sure he has a sparkling personality, but if I'm totally honest I just want to take his food and return home to eat and watch Netflix. Does that make me a bad person? Oh, it does? *Shrugs with indifference*
vanilla icecream
When my vanilla ice cream was at soft serve consistency I added some cherries that I soaked in sugar, lemon juice and whiskey (cherry recipe to come later). Summer is winding down at an alarming rate so make your ice cream before the chilly season comes around. But then again, does it really matter what season it is when it comes to ice cream? Answer: hell no!


About 1 quart (1l)
Adapted from The Perfect Scoop (Ten Speed Press)
For a richer custard, you can add up to 3 more egg yolks. For a less-rich custard, substitute half-and-half for the heavy cream, realizing that the final texture won’t be as rich or as smooth as if using cream.
  • 1 cup (250ml) whole milk
  • A pinch of salt
  • 3/4 cup (150g) sugar
  • 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
  • 2 cups (500ml) heavy cream
  • 5 large egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1. Heat the milk, salt, and sugar in a saucepan. Scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean into the milk with a paring knife, then add the bean pod to the milk. Cover, remove from heat, and infuse for one hour.
2. To make the ice cream, set up an ice bath by placing a 2-quart (2l) bowl in a larger bowl partially filled with ice and water. Set a strainer over the top of the smaller bowl and pour the cream into the bowl.
3. In a separate bowl, stir together the egg yolks. Rewarm the milk then gradually pour some of the milk into the yolks, whisking constantly as you pour. Scrape the warmed yolks and milk back into the saucepan.
4. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly and scraping the bottom with a heat-resistant spatula, until the custard thickens enough to coat the spatula.
5. Strain the custard into the heavy cream. Stir over the ice until cool, add the vanilla extract, then refrigerate to chill thoroughly. Preferably overnight.
6. Remove the vanilla bean and freeze the custard to your machines instructions (for preparation without machine read below). 
1. Prepare your ice cream mixture, then chill it over an ice bath.
2. Put a deep baking dish, or bowl made of plastic, stainless steel or something durable in the freezer, and pour your custard mixture into it.
3. After forty-five minutes, open the door and check it.
As it starts to freeze near the edges, remove it from the freezer and stir it vigorously with a spatula or whisk. Really beat it up and break up any frozen sections. Return to freezer.
4. Continue to check the mixture every 30 minutes, stirring vigorously as it’s freezing. If you have one, you can use a hand-held mixer for best results, or use a stick-blenderor hand-held mixer.
But since we’re going low-tech here, you can also use just a spatula or a sturdy whisk along with some modest physical effort.
5. Keep checking periodically and stirring while it freezes (by hand or with the electric mixer) until the ice cream is frozen. It will likely take 2-3 hours to be ready.


  1. Lady, you are my new hero. I followed the link from Tastespotting due to a similar predicament of desperately wanting to make my own ice cream but having no dedicated ice cream maker, and this looks freaking perfect. I really have no excuse not to make cherimoya ice cream now that I have access to a method and all the ingredients, so once again, thank you soooooo much.



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