I think more people would make ice cream if they knew just how easy it can be to create at home; you don’t have to be committed to sweating over the stove while you correctly (or not!) temper eggs and milk. Today actually marks the first day after National Ice Cream Month. Typical me, I’m running a little behind, but it’s totally worth the wait. This easy, homemade mint chocolate chip ice cream will keep the celebration rolling.
This recipe is a perfect example of a simple way to try your hand at ice cream, while saving your scrambled eggs for the breakfast table. Its inspiration came by a recent article in the August issue of Food and Wine, and the result was this amazingly simple and deliciously creamy treat.
The key to this ice cream is fresh peppermint leaves, which continue to prosper in my garden — and can do so in virtually any garden (trust me, people) — to infuse the mint flavoring. I tend to think that most store-bought mint ice cream can have a synthetic flavor to it, but using the peppermint leaves straight from my garden made this ice cream just clean and fresh, leaving no chalky texture in your mouth. Plus, no artificial fillers and flavoring is always a good thing in my book.
Valerie’s Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream
Makes about 1 pint
1 cup whole milk
1 ½ cup cream
1/2 cup sugar
Pinch of kosher salt
¼ cup cocoa powder (unsweetened)
15 fresh peppermint leaves
2 ounces chopped semi sweet chocolate
Combine the first 6 ingredients in a pot on the stove (reserving the the semi sweet chocolate bits). Whisk occasionally on medium heat until sugar has completely dissolved, and cocoa powder is incorporated. Remove from heat and cool on the stove until room temperature. Put the mixture in the refrigerator until completely chilled.
Stir the mixture and strain it into an ice cream maker bowl. Add the chopped chocolate chunks and churn until thick and creamy. My ice cream maker instructions say to wait to add the chocolate chunks until the last five minutes of churn time, but I say Cuisinart instructions be damned, and throw them in from the start. Serve directly or store in the freezer until ready to enjoy.