Tuesday, July 3, 2012
Pistachio cardamom ice cream
So I finally got an ice cream maker!! I'm quite excited about this because it's shaping up to be a hot summer already. I've been dreaming up all sorts of flavors I want to try, not only in ice cream, but frozen yogurt, sorbet, gelato.... Mmmmm.... I'm really glad that I can get good, local milk, too - not raw, but still non-homogenized, pastured milk. I was flipping through Gourmet Today because there's quite a few ice cream recipes in there and came across this one. I knew it was destined to be my first ice cream because a friend of mine had just given me some green cardamom pods. I didn't realize quite how laborious this ice cream would be. I mean, I knew it would take time to cook the base, chill, churn, freeze - but I didn't realize that I'd basically be making my own condensed milk for this recipe, which took quite a while. The end flavor was superb, don't get me wrong, but a part of me is still wondering if I could have gotten away with using a can of condensed milk....
Anyways, this ice cream was quite heavenly and worth the time. The aroma and flavor from the green cardamom were fantastic. I didn't realize the difference there is between black cardamom, pre-ground cardamom, and these wonderful green pods. The pistachios were really second fiddle to the cardamom - it paired so well with the creaminess and sweetness. This recipe will make about a quart of ice cream and is extremely addictive. No doubt there will be more ice cream postings in the near future!
Pistachio cardamom ice cream
6 cups whole milk, divided
1 cup heavy cream or half and half
about 12 green cardamom pods
1/2 cup granulated sugar, preferably unbleached
pinch of sea salt
1/3 cup roasted, shelled pistachios
First and foremost, make sure your ice cream maker is frozen and ready to go (follow the instructions).
Heat 4 cups of milk in a medium skillet over medium heat. Bring to a gentle boil, stirring often. Let boil, stirring often, until the milk reduces to one cup. Start stirring constantly until the milk further reduces to about 1/3-1/2 a cup. This will take a while and it will be thick like a batter. Then pour it into a small bowl and set aside.
Crack open the cardamom pods using the side of a large knife. Then heat the remaining 2 cups of milk along with the cream/half and half, cardamom, sugar, and salt until the mixture comes to a simmer. Whisk in the condensed milk. Simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring often, until the sugar is completely dissolved. Then set aside and let steep for about 15 minutes.
Strain the mixture through a fine mesh sieve into a metal bowl, pushing out all the liquid. Place the bowl in the refrigerator for about 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Then cover and refrigerate for another 3-4 hours. In the meantime, if your pistachios have a lot of skins on them, you can blanch them quickly in boiling water, drain, and rub off the skins. Then chop roughly.
When it's very cold, churn and freeze in your ice cream maker according to directions. Add the pistachios about halfway through and continue until it reaches your desired consistency. Transfer to a freezer container and freeze for at least one hour before eating.
What was I cooking one year ago?: guacamole
Two years ago?: cauliflower and broccoli stuffed manicotti