Is it summer yet? It sure feels that way! Although I truly believe any time is a good time to make ice cream, hot days like today really lend itself to this activity. Other than churning out pistachio ice cream, all the flavors I usually create use the basic vanilla base from my machine’s recipe booklet. It comes out perfectly every time; light and creamy with the ideal amount of sweetness. I’ve experimented with many combinations, adding pureed bananas and nuts, crushed Oreos, mint extract, toffee bits…the list goes on.
This time, however, I made dulce de leche from scratch and swirled it into my mixture. It. was. superb. Every single person at my dining room table asked for seconds until the whole container was empty.
This recipe is time-consuming (the dulce de leche takes 4 hours to boil), but not at all labor intensive. Besides, it’s completely worth the wait. Fortunately, Chef Jodi Bernhard over at Barcelona Greenwich was gracious enough to share her tip for creating flavor ribbons in my homemade concoction. I took her suggestion to utilize a pastry bag for the effect, which worked like a charm. (It felt appropriate to ask her advice considering I first fell head over heels for dulce de leche when it poured out the sides of Barcelona Wine Bar’s decadent crepes!)
If you haven’t experienced this thick, gooey, rich, sweet, caramel-like goodness, you must. It’s everything you could possibly want from a dessert, and once you marry it with ice cream, oh my gosh.
Salivating yet? Here’s what you need to make this at home.
1 cup whole milk, well chilled
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 cups heavy cream, well chilled
1 – 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 can sweetened condensed milk
For the dulce de leche:
Remove the label from the sweetened condensed milk. Poke two holes through the top of the can, on opposite sides.
Fill a saucepan with water, exposing only 1/2 inch from the top of the can. To avoid a rattling sound (trust me, it will happen!), place a dish towel beneath the can.
Boil for 4 hours, continuing to refill the water as it begins to evaporate.
After 4 hours, turn off the heat and carefully remove the can. Once it has cooled, open the top and like magic, dulce de leche!
You can stop right here, eat it with a spoon, layer it on cake, pour it over brownies, slather it on store bought ice cream, OR you can make your own.
For the ice cream:
Whisk together milk, heavy cream, sugar and vanilla extract in a large bowl until sugar dissolves.
Pour mixture into frozen ice cream maker and process until well blended and smooth, about 25 minutes.
Fill a pastry bag with cooled dulce de leche and squeeze entire mixture into ice cream maker while it is still churning.
Freeze ice cream in a tupperware for two hours, or overnight until ready to serve. (I always dip my spoon in to taste before freezing. You know, just to be sure it’s okay…)
Scoop into a sundae dish and eat and enjoy on a nice, sunny day!