Saturday, March 8, 2014

Cookies 'n' Cream Ice Cream

Whenever it's a homemade ice cream day, I feel like jumping around and doing a happy dance. I used to have a crazy sweet tooth, but getting a root canal has a tendency to help kick that habit. I'm still pretty obsessed with making ice cream though, and cookies 'n' cream combines two of Brian's favorite things — ice ceam and Oreos.

My little sis, Kyarrah, from the Big Brothers Big Sisters program, loves ice cream too, so she was the perfect person to help me out with this recipe. Unfortunately ... our first batch kind of tanked because my freezer didn't completely freeze the ice cream bowl. On my second attempt though, it turned out fine—and I still have about one serving left in my freezer, two weeks later.

Seriously, there's nothing on the ingredient list that's good for you.
Even the milk is the full-fat, million calorie per serving kind.

Though making ice cream is so much easier than it used to be with automatic machines — I have a Cuisinart — it still takes a bit of pre-planning. You need to freeze the bowl about 24 hours in advance, chill the mixture for a couple hours before putting it into the machine, and then pop it into the freezer once you're done. If you make the mixture at the same time you put the bowl in the freezer, you can have fresh ice cream in a little over 24 hours.

After putting the bowl to the ice cream machine into the freezer, the first thing you'll want to do is gather all your ingredients. I have a fancy Williams Sonoma ice cream book, but every time I make something from it, the ice cream tastes awful. So, I usually resort to my old standby, the simple vanilla recipe that came with my Cuisinart ice cream maker. You'll need 1 cup of whole milk (reduced fat milk won't work; I've tried) 3/4 cup granulated sugar, a tiny bit of salt, 2 cups of heavy cream and 1 tablespoon of pure vanilla extract for the vanilla base. See the recipe below for exact directions. You'll want to cover this and freeze it overnight for a thicker ice cream.

In the meantime, you can go about crushing your Oreos. I put about 15 Double Stuff Oreos into a plastic bag and use a rolling pin. I like my Oreo chunks in larger pieces, but you can roll them a little more for smaller bites (just don't turn them into dust). Set them aside and wait until the next day.

When your bowl is finally frozen and your mixture is nice and chilled, plug everything in and let the machine start churning. After it gets going for a few seconds, go ahead and pour your mixture into the opening at the top. I recommend using a bowl that has a pour spout, since you're aiming for a small opening at the top of the machine.

As soon as I pour the mixture into the machine, I pop the container I'm planning to put the ice cream in into the freezer. Once it's done mixing, the ice cream can melt pretty quickly, so this gives me a little extra wiggle time when I'm done before I have a soupy mess.

The mixing time varies depending on how cold the mixture is and how frozen your bowl is, but generally after about 15 minutes, it's time to add in the Oreos. Go ahead and dump them into the opening, then set the timer for another 5 minutes.

Once it's done, use a plastic spoon to scoop the ice cream into the container. I usually freeze mine for a couple hours before serving. 

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