Any time is a good time to eat ice cream.
Whether sampling it with a tiny tasting spoon, digging into a mountain of scoops, uncovering it from a sea of toppings, slurping it with determination to keep it from dripping down my arm or shamelessly scraping it straight from the bottom of a container, I’ve made this a staple in my self prescribed daily dessert intake.
Even when I was a kid, I never let anything come between me and my sweet treat. In fact, my family often tells stories of how I used to sit and shiver while licking the creamy goodness through chattering teeth. With dedication and determination, I would finish every last drop. Hot, cold or otherwise, I was all in. (I’ve always been one to persevere!)
I also vividly remember kneeling on a chair at my grandparents’ house to help churn ice cream in their machine. It was a special time together, and I was proud to be able to return the favor recently in my adult life. My grandmother requested pistachio ice cream as her special birthday indulgence, and I was honored to make it for her now that I’m tall enough to reach the counter.
While the recipe called for unsalted pistachios, I used the opposite and found the sweet/salty parallel to be very intriguing in an otherwise sugary treat.
This process requires some legwork, but it’s well worth the effort. Trust me, your tongue will thank you.
1 cup unsalted, shelled pistachios
3/4 cup sugar
2 cups milk (do not use nonfat or low-fat)
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
4 large egg yolks
1 cup whipping cream
3/4 cup unsalted, shelled pistachios, toasted and coarsely chopped
Finely grind 1 cup pistachios and 1/4 cup sugar in processor.
In a large saucepan, bring milk and ground pistachio mixture to a boil. Remove from heat.
Mix in almond extract.
Whisk egg yolks and remaining 1/2 cup sugar in a medium bowl. Gradually whisk in hot milk mixture.
Return custard to saucepan. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly until custard thickens and leaves path on back of spoon when finger is drawn across, about 10 minutes. Do not boil.
Strain into large bowl. Chill until cold, about 2 hours.
Stir 1 cup whipping cream and chopped pistachios into custard.
Process through ice cream maker for about 25 minutes. Transfer into an airtight container and freezer until ready to serve. Can be made up until three days ahead of time, if you can resist long enough.
Eat and enjoy…perhaps in a homemade waffle cone?