I have a problem. No make that two problems. The first being that I suffer from a plight of good guy friends declaring their love for me making my perceived platonic friendship super awkward and causing the number of guy friends I have to plummet. The second, and more concerning being that I appear to have an unhealthy obsession with ice cream.
It has come to my attention that the majority of pictures that I have posted to Instagram in recent weeks have been ice cream related. In the last 48 hours I have posted four times in a row about ice cream that I have consumed. My love for frozen dairy is going to cause my toes to fall off for sure if I am not careful.
So to fuel my habit, I spent my modest accumulation of Christmas money on an Ice Cream Machine. The only thing now stopping me from stashing a continuous volume of frozen delight in my freezer is the fact that my new flat doesn't yet have a freezer. This could potentially be a saving grace.
Ice cream makers can be reasonably cheap. I have a small 1L capacity Cuisinart one that set me back a mere $129. It is also bright watermelon pink which is great.
When I first made ice cream in this machine, I made the rookie mistake of not chilling the base fully overnight before churning. While an ice cream maker may seem like a magical glory gadget, it's chilling capacity is only so much. It relies on a freezer bowl that you store in the freezer over night. The ice cream freezes when it's heat is transferred to the bowl. If the base is too warm the overall energy transfer won't be sufficient for ice crystals to form.
Some recipes call for glucose, dextrose and skim milk powder but I found this nifty custard based recipe on Chow.com. I modified the recipe a little to make it extra chocolately and excellent. It is essentially a chocolate custard that you then go and whack in an ice cream machine.
I am a bit of a chocolate ice cream fiend and not wanting to toot my own horn or anything but this is the best chocolate ice cream I have ever eaten. It may or may not have anything to do with the whole block of dark chocolate I sneakily melted into the base...
Dark Chocolate Hokey Pokey Ice Cream with Gooey Fudge Brownie
2 cups whole fat milk
4 large egg yolks
200g dark chocolate (I used 70% cocoa)
1/2 cup of really good quality cocoa
3/4 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup smashed up hokey pokey (you could use Crunchie bars if you don't want to make your own - recipe at the end)
1/2 cup chocolate brownie, chopped into cubes (once again if you can't be bothered making your own just go and buy a piece from your local bakery)
Heat the cream in a large saucepan until just below a simmer. Melt the dark chocolate into the cream, stirring well so it is evenly dispersed. Pour in the milk and warm until just below a simmer then remove from the heat.
Beat together the sugar, egg yolks and vanilla until a thick pale mixture results. Add in the cocoa and a splash of the milk mix to create a thick paste. While still beating, gently pour in all of the chocolate milk and beat until all of the egg paste has been incorporated.
Return the mixture to the large saucepan and gently heat whilst scraping the bottom constantly with a spatula until the base thickens like a good thick pouring custard.
Transfer the base into a container and leave to cool before leaving to chill in the fridge overnight. At the same time place your ice cream maker's bowl in the freezer (ideally you want the bowl in there for 24 hours). I would put the brownie in the fridge as well - just so it brings most of the ingredients down to chilled temperature.
Once the base has chilled, pour it into your ice cream machine and press go. Once the ice cream is looking a lot like soft serve you can go ahead and add in the chopped brownie and smashed up hokey pokey. Once The ice cream has thickened further, transfer into a freezer proof container and leave to harden in the freezer for 6 hours or overnight.
Scoop into cones or bowls and sprinkle over left over hokey pokey. Enjoy!
5 Tbsp white sugar
2 Tbsp golden syrup
1 tsp baking soda
Melt together the sugar and the golden syrup until the sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil for 2 minutes before adding in the baking soda and remove from the heat. Stir gently so the sugar froths up then pour onto a tray lined with baking paper. Leave to cool until the hokey pokey becomes hard and brittle and then smash into pieces.
Ps. This is what my machine looks like.