Thursday, April 14, 2011

Peanut Buttah Luvah!


I love ice cream.  If there's a sweet I crave on a regular basis, it's ice cream.  Usually it's ice cream sundaes.  Something about cold, creamy vanilla ice cream, smothered in hot, gooey chocolatey fudge, topped with salty, crunchy nuts, really makes my mouth water, my stomach growl, my knees quiver, you get the point.  But ever since I was a little girl, our freezer was usually stocked with chocolate peanut butter ice cream.  Not chocolate peanut butter CUP ice cream.  That stuff is no good.  Something about the frozen chocolate from the peanut butter cups just doesn't work for me.  Adds a filmy, greasiness to each bite that I just don't dig.  I'm talking about chocolate ice cream in all its glory surrounded by ribbons of frozen, peanutty peanut butter.  In the North, you can buy it anywhere.  In the South, you can only get it at Baskin Robbins.  In this bitch's kitchen, you can now find it homemade in my freezer, because that's how I do.  If I want it bad enough, I make it happen.  Now, on to the dreamy goodness that is chocolate peanut butter ice cream.  This recipe was inspired by THIS site.

Here's What You Need:
4 egg yolks
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (I used Ghirardelli Cocoa)
2 tablespoons of Hershey's syrup
1 cup milk
1/4 cup of peanut butter, plus 1/4 cup more to add later (I used Jif Natural peanut butter because I'm just an au natural kinda gal)
1 cup heavy cream or whipping cream
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract 

Here's What You Do:
In a medium-size bowl, add the egg yolks and sugar; beat until thick and lemon colored, GENTLY (I'm serious about this step...you'll get cocoa powder EVERYWHERE if you don't listen to me) stir in the cocoa powder until you have a batter that looks like brownie mix.  mmmm....brownie miiiixxxx.  Have I told ya'll about my dream of bathing in brownie mix?  I'll save it for another blog.

In a small heavy saucepan over low to medium-low heat, add milk. Slowly bring milk just to a gentle simmer or until it begins to bubble around the edges. Remove from heat.

Gradually stir hot milk a LITTLE BIT AT A TIME (Again, I'm serious, or you'll have chocolate scrambled egg ice cream and who the hell wants that in their mouth?) into beaten egg/sugar/cocoa mixture with a wire whisk. Pour mixture back into the saucepan. Over low heat, stirring constantly (Not as constantly as you might think, but keep an eye on it so it NEVER boils), heat until the mixture (custard) thickens and will coat the back of a metal spoon with a thin film, approximately 7 to 10 minutes. On your candy thermometer, the temperature should reach between 165 and 180 degrees F.  Take mixture off the stove at this point and put it in a refrigeratable bowl.  Stir in 1/4 cup of peanut butter until it's melted in and place mixture, covered, in the fridge or freezer if you are impatient like me and wait until it's cooled to a balmy 65 degrees.

At this point you need your ice cream maker and I am lucky enough to have received one from my outlaws for Christmas (ok, ok, they are actually my inlaws, but the word outlaws just makes them seem more dangerous, more backwoods, I imagine them holding guns and wearing coonhats when I call them outlaws!).  Before you pour your mixture into your ice cream maker, stir in the cream and the vanilla.  Make your ice cream according to manufacturer's instructions.  Once you get your ice cream to the soft serve stage, put it in a freezerable, air-tight container.  Now, take your 1/4 cup of peanut butter you have leftover and stir it into the ice cream so that when it freezes you'll have ribbons.  Peanut buttery ribbons. Peanut Butter Ribbon Time, Peanut Butter Ribbon Time...  

Freeze for about an hour or so, until you just can't freakin' wait to plunge a spoon into that stuff....lock all your doors and enjoy!   

    

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