by Jack Bishop
from The Perfect Recipe
Makes 1 quart
If necessary, two tablespoons of vanilla extract may be substituted for the vanilla bean. To maximize the extract’s potency, stir it into the chilled custard just before churning.—Jack Bishop
2 cups whole milk
3/4 cup sugar
4-inch piece vanilla bean, slit lengthwise and seeds removed, pod reserved
6 large egg yolks
1 cup heavy cream
1. Bring milk, 1/4 cup of sugar, and vanilla seeds and pod to 175°F (80°C) in a heavy saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally to dissolve sugar and break up vanilla seeds.
2. Meanwhile, beat remaining sugar with yolks until mixture turns pale yellow and thickens so that it falls in ribbons, about 2 minutes with an electric mixer or 4 minutes with a whisk.
3. Remove 1/2 cup hot milk from pan and slowly whisk it into beaten yolks. Then gradually whisk yolk mixture into saucepan and, stirring constantly, heat this mixture over medium-low heat to 180°F (82°C), 8 to 10 minutes. Remove saucepan from heat; strain custard into a plastic or nonreactive metal bowl and stir in cream. Retrieve vanilla pods from strainer and add them to the mixture. Place bowl in a larger bowl of ice water to bring custard to room temperature.
4. Seal container and refrigerate until custard is no more than 40 degrees, 4 to 8 hours. (This is unnecessary with self-contained electric model). Remove vanilla pods (or add extract) and pour custard into an ice cream machine. Churn until frozen.
Recipe © 1993 by Cook’s Illustrated. All rights reserved.