Thursday, July 4, 2013

The Best Ice Cream Ever – July 4, 2014

O.K., it’s not red, white and blue, but I was in the market for the best ice cream ever and I think I might have found it.  Well, I must admit, it’s actually gelato.  The difference between ice cream and gelato is just milk fat.  Ice cream is just what it sounds like, frozen cream, where gelato is frozen milk.  You would think that would make the ice cream more flavorful, but it s just the opposite in that the lower milk fat coats the tongue less and allows you to taste more of the ice cream flavor.  The only problem is that milk freezes at a lower temperature, so not all ice cream makers can make gelato.

Fortunately, my sweet husband bought me a gelato maker for Christmas a couple years ago.  I keep several bars of good chocolate in the cabinet just for when I have extra milk to use up.  I almost always make dark chocolate ice cream and I can tell you my secret – extra chocolate.  This time though I wanted something extra and I was lamenting the fact that Comfy Cow just stopped making their Lemon Pistachio Toffee Ice Cream.  The only thing better would be Dark Chocolate Pistachio Toffee Ice Cream.  And, it turns out I was right!  Here is how you make it!

 Dark Chocolate Pistachio Toffee Ice Cream

2 sticks butter
1 c. + ¼ to ½ c. sugar
1 c. chopped pistachios
1 T. corn syrup
1 T. water
3 c. milk
3 T. cornstarch
¼ tsp. salt
7-8 oz. bittersweet chocolate

Break or chop chocolate into small pieces in bowl.  Combine butter, 1 c. sugar, pistachios, corn syrup and water in heavy pan over medium high heat.  Cook 8-10 minutes until one shade darker than brown sugar and you begin to smell a faint burning smell.  Pour on cookie sheet and spread evenly.  Let sit in fridge one hour to cool. 

Meanwhile, bring 2 ¼ c. milk just to boil over medium heat.  Whisk remaining sugar, cornstarch, salt and ¼ c. milk until smooth and whisk into boiling milk.  Bring to boil again and whisk 3 minutes until it thickens.  Remove from heat.  Bring ½ c. milk to boil.  Pour over chocolate pieces and stir until smooth.  Stir chocolate mixture into cornstarch mixture until completely mixed.  Cover in fridge over night with plastic over to keep from forming skin.

The next day, freeze mixture in gelato maker adding about half of the broken toffee at the end of the freezing.  Chill in freezer 1 ½ hours or longer.  Soften as needed before serving with more toffee bits.

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