Tag Archives: vanilla bean paste

Organic Bourbon Ice Cream

Wow, has this recipe been an adventure! We tested ten batches to bring you the best Bourbon Ice Cream recipe. The even better news is you can substitute any liquor you want! The best news is that it is easy.

I purchased the ice cream maker when I was testing out the Pina Colada recipe back in July. This opened up a new world of bad adult behavior for me. A reader suggested I try making bourbon ice cream. I must note that I am not a straight whiskey drinker. I like the tasting notes in Bourbon and knew it would blend well with ice cream. I started researching recipes and found almost all of them require eggs, which is really a custard. I don’t really feel like spending a lot of time on making this and want it to be easy. Also, I tried making the custard and it was a disaster. I was chatting with NinJo and wasn’t paying attention. In less than a second the stupid mixture turned to scrambled eggs.  I was furious as I just wasted a vanilla bean which is expensive and time consuming to clean.  I now have sworn custard off completely. I want to make ICE CREAM.

NINJA LESSONS: 

  • All alcohol should be added in at the end. Otherwise, it does not freeze no matter how hard you pray. It worked in the Pina Colada as there was no dairy in it.
  • Making small batches works much better than large ones. For some reason it became more whipped.  You need to freeze it after you make it unless you prefer the soft serve.  So plan to take a couple days to make small batches or purchase additional crucibles.
  • If you use too much heavy whipping cream, it leaves a buttery film on your tongue. It works in heated dishes because it doesn’t solidify, but in cold dishes it is not a pleasant texture.  I tried substituting more milk for it but it was too icy, eliminating it made it too light.  Organic Valley is my favorite brand for both heavy cream and 1/2 and 1/2 as it is grass fed cow’s milk which give it a much better flavor. Many organic farmers  feed their cows organic corn and we all should know that cows prefer grass!  If you have to use another brand, that is okay, just use organic as it is more humane to cows, and cows are our friends.
  • The last lesson we learned was a borderline annoying amount about vanilla. So much, I am going to write a separate article about it.   In a nutshell, the best vanilla product on the market is  Nielsen-Massey “vanilla bean paste”.  You can pick this up at Williams-Sonoma, Fresh Market or another specialty food store. It is different than their vanilla extract or beans, so look for the paste. Vanilla beans are a pain to clean and storage is not long term. I had a dried up bean which is crazy irritating, considering the cost. Vanilla paste has sugar and actual vanilla bean seeds in it which give the ice cream an authentic vanilla look.  Most vanilla extracts will work but any vanilla product quality is far superior with the Nielsen-Massey brand.  We recently visited their facility and were blown away by how amazing of a company they are.  It took a lot of self control seeing gallons of this sitting around and not just pop open one and do a shot.(Um, yes, it is that good) You can use this product for creme brule’s, coffee and just about anything would use vanilla in. With over 200 tasting notes that not even all have been identified, vanilla is my new favorite ingredient(sorry, had to slip a fact in there).

So, NinJo and I experimented through-and-through to find you an easy, sure-fire method of this recipe. I hope to create more recipes in the future for adult ice cream and will keep you informed. Enjoy!

INGREDIENTS: Serves 2-3 depending on your portions.

3/4 cup of organic heavy whipping cream.
3/4 cup of organic half and half
1/4 cup of organic sugar
1 tsp vanilla bean paste
1-2 tablespoons quality bourbon (we used Knob Creek) Use 1 if you are serving guests who “may” like it, 2 if you know your guests are fans of bourbon.
Optional: 1/4 cup candied pecans

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Make sure your ice cream maker crucible is frozen according to your manual.
  2. Mix everything except the bourbon in a measuring cup, (this is important as I found out the hard way it will freeze the ingredients as you put them in and will not mix for you. You will end up with little globs of whatever you added first)
  3. Remove the crucible from the freezer and put it on the turntable of the machine, add mixing insert and put on the lid. (may vary for different machines)
  4. Turn on the machine and immediately pour the mixture into the spout. It is important to do this right away as it will allow it to freeze better.
  5. Let the mixture blend for 15 minutes or until solid.
  6. Add bourbon and pecans if you are adding those and knock off any globs of ice cream from the mixing insert.
  7. Let the mixture blend for another 3-5 minutes.
  8. Remove the insert and transfer ice cream into a covered container and put into the freezer for a couple of hours. Or, eat the entire batch right out of the crucible as we will not judge you.
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