Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Some Thoughts On Homemade Ice Cream

When we moved recently, our kids found our ice cream maker, which we recieved for our wedding over 11 years ago and have never used. I've held onto it because I remember how good homemade ice cream was when I had it growing up, so I figured I'd get around to using it. When the boys found it, they went nuts and wanted to make ice cream right away. We finally got around to it the other night, and I used a recipe from The New Best Recipe cookbook, which called for whole vanilla beans, so it was some very expensive ice cream by the time it was done.

We made it in the morning and the sound of it grinding was enough to send me over the edge, but I figured it all would be worth it. After about 30 minutes of what sounded like tumbling small boulders, it came out soft serve consistency and we stuck it in the freezer for dinner. By the time we dug into it it was perfectly hardened, but came out with a bit of a grainy consistency I wasn't too pleased with. It did have a very true vanilla flavor, but in the end, I don't think it was worth all the trouble (and definitely not the cost of the vanilla beans). But it sure looked pretty with the Tuscan style cantaloupe I served with it (which, by the way, is totally worth the extra you pay for it. It's the best cantaloupe I've ever had).

I put the ice cream maker away just in case we want to give it a try again, but next time I think I'll save the time, money, and noise pollution and just buy a few pints of Haagen-Daz. In my opinion, it doesn't get any better than that.


Take-a-Wipf said...

I remember reading a comparison of ice cream machines that pointed out that most all homeade ice cream will end up "grainy" after is put in the freezer. Something to do with the processing method and air I think.

lara said...

I hear that David Leibovitz's book The Perfect Scoop is the go to book on homemade ice cream.

But I'm with you on Hagen-dazs.