I partly grew up in Manhattan, New York. And one of the sweetest memories from my teenage years there is getting to eat the best ice cream I had ever tasted, namely at Baskin-Robbins. My top of the list favorite flavor was (and still is, as a matter of fact) mint chocolate chip. Although I did come across this flavor of ice cream in other places during later years, unfortunately none of them ever seemed to fully satisfy me. So, with all my deep interest in culinary activities, and desserts being one of my biggest passions ever, I decided it was best I made my own mint chocolate chip ice cream. I even bought an ice cream maker, which seemed to be a ‘not so necessary’ investment but in the end turned out to be ultimately cost-effective. And despite all the cream and sugar that goes into it, homemade ice cream is definitely a much healthier alternative compared to store-bought, as long as you have the patience and will to make it. And yes, last but not least, as you may have already guessed, this recipe does call for an ice cream maker!
To keep a long story short, I adapted this recipe from Mark Bittman’s ‘Vanilla Ice Cream’ recipe in my ‘How to Cook Everything’ iPad app. (Actually the only thing I adapted was to increase the amount of cream by 75 ml.) If you’d like to find out more on Mark Bittman’s books and available applications, please click here. After several trials, using other flavors as well, I’ve decided that this recipe here, using no eggs, is my final destination in my quest for a creamy and rich mint chocolate chip ice cream. Be my guest and try for yourself. I believe you may be quite surprised – in a good sense – at the result!
- 500 ml whole fat milk
- 300 ml fresh cream
- 100 gr caster sugar
- 2 tbsp (20 gr) cornstarch
- few drops of green food coloring (optional)
- 1/2 or 1 tsp mint essence or extract
- 50-60 gr bitter or bittersweet chocolate, at room temperature
Step by step method
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- Combine milk and 50 gr of the sugar in a saucepan and place over medium-low heat. Stir every once in a while.
- In the meantime combine cornstarch with remaining sugar in a small bowl and add a couple of tablespoons cold water to make a slurry. Add this to the milk before it starts to boil and continue to stir using a whisk to prevent any lumps from forming.
- Once mixture starts to boil, lower heat and cook for about 2 minutes, continuously stirring.
- Cool mixture thoroughly by placing saucepan in an ice cold bain-marie or stirring occasionally to prevent a skin from forming on top, until it reaches room temperature. Cover and place in refrigerator overnight. You can use it right away if you want to speed things up but my trials have shown that it’s much better to plan ahead and get things ready one night in advance. The ice cream turns out much better if you have let your mixture cool in the fridge overnight along with the cream you will use.
- Now, chop the chocolate and set aside. Get your machine ready. Combine the cream into the milk cornstarch mixture, both of which you should have taken out of the fridge at the last moment. Add food coloring (if using) and mint extract. Since the flavor for most extracts may vary, start by adding a small amount and check to taste the strength. Add a little more if necessary.
- Get your ice cream maker started and pour the mixture. (Check your instruction manual.) Add the chopped chocolate halfway through the processing time, which should take a total of about 20-25 minutes depending on room temperature and your machine’s capacity.
- Since it contains no additives, homemade ice cream will freeze to become much stiffer than store-bought. If you have to keep it in your deepfreezer, take it out and let it rest at room temperature for about 5-6 minutes before attempting to scoop or spoon out some!