Monday, July 16, 2012

In which there is ice cream!

My family came to visit this past weekend, and after reading my new August edition of Women's Day magazine, I was inspired to make homemade ice cream just for the occasion.

I made two kinds - Strawberry Cheesecake (aka my dad's favorite kind of ice cream) and S'more. No big deal. I was drawn to these particular ice cream recipes because you don't need an ice cream maker. Just an electric mixer. Brilliant! And can I just say, so good. Both had the taste and texture of real ice cream, and were far more gratifying and enjoyable because they were home made!

10 Graham crackers
2T butter, room temp
4oz bittersweet chocolate
1 (14oz) can sweetened condensed milk
1 1/2 t vanilla extract
2 cups heavy cream
1 cup mini marshmallows
3/4 cup mini chocolate chips
Side notes: I just buzzed regular chocolate chips up in my magic bullet instead of buying minis. You could also chop up regular sized marshmallows instead of buying minis. 

CRUST Heat oven to 350. Line the bottom of an 8-in springform pan (a cheescake pan) with parchment paper (i didn't line mine and it was just fine. Just sayin'.) In a food processor (or in a bag with a meat hammer!), grind 8 graham crackers until finely ground. Add butter until blended, then press into the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake until golden brown, 8-10 minutes. Let cool completely (about 20 mins).

CHOCOLATE LAYER Melt the bittersweet chocolate in the microwave. Using an electric mixer, beat the chocolate, 8 oz of the condensed milk (1/2 cup + 2 T), and 3/4 t of vanilla until combined. Add 1 cup of heavy cream and beat until thick, stiff peaks form (this takes a few minutes. be sure not to overbeat!) Fold in the marshmallows, then spoon on top of the cooled crust and spread evenly.

VANILLA LAYER Beat the remaining condensed milk, vanilla, and heavy cream until stiff, thick peaks form and then fold in 1/2 cup of the mini chocolate chips. Spread this on top of the chocolate layer. 

OPTIONAL Break the remaining 2 graham crackers into tiny pieces, and sprinkle on top, along with the remaining chocolate chips. 

Cover and freeze for at least 4 hours, and up to 2 weeks. Enjoy!

If you want to make just regular old ice cream, just use the sweetened condensed milk, vanilla, and heavy cream. I am looking forward to make all kinds of fun ice cream concoctions this summer!

1 14-oz can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup cream cheese at room temperature
1 1/2 t vanilla extract
2 cups heavy cream
1 lb fresh pureed strawberries + 2 tsp sugar
Side note: This recipe uses fresh strawberries. I used the frozen kind that come in a syrup. Because they are just so gosh darn deliciously sugary sweet. And next time I make this, I am totally going to do the graham cracker crust like the S'More cake has. 

Line a bread pan (usually 8 1/2 by 4 1/2 pan) with parchment paper, allow to hang down around the sides of the pan. 

Using an electric mizer, beat the condenseed milk, cream cheese, and vanilla in a bowl until combined. Add the heavy cream and beat until thick, stiff peaks form. Don't overbeat!

Spoon half the vanilla cream mixture into the pan, spreading evenly. Tap the pan to get rid of any air bubbles. Fold 1/3 of the strawberries into the remaining mixture, not quite mixing all the way so you get that fun swirly look. Spoon into the pan. Spread remaining strawberries over top now, or when you serve.

Freeze for at least 4 hours and up to 2 weeks. Enjoy!

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