Wow, I no longer have to go to Bombay Chaat & Ice Cream in San Francisco for my cardamom ice cream fix.
I linked a basic gelato recipe below. It's a custard base that doesn't seem particularly unique, but I'm in love with it because it really worked for me. I don't think it's labelled properly as "gelato," since my product looks distinctly like ice cream shop ice cream (see photo).
Biggest triumph: I finally banished that accursed egginess that's been plaguing my ice cream. I don't know if it was the recipe, my self-enforced extra patience, advice from various parties, or an alignment of the stars, but here are my adjustments to the recipe.
-I used "homemade" superfine sugar. Basically, process the sugar in a food processor until it's powdery. It makes a bit of a mess if you try to make an entire container. There's debate about the virtues of store bought superfine sugar and homemade, but I'm not going to be picky. I just think it melts into eggs a lot more quickly than unaltered granulated.
-this recipe makes a lot of ice cream, so my food processor ended up being too small for all the hot milk. Unless you have a large processor, use a blender. I poured in as much hot milk as I could, then whisked the egg mixture back into the plain hot milk as quickly as I could (fast whisk, slow pour).
-**CRUCIAL**: I put the yolks and sugar in my food processor, let it run until the eggs turned pale yellow, then added the piping hot milk one teaspoon at a time. My friend told me that her old cooking teacher would always force them to do this, saying it would keep the eggs from curdling and tasting eggy. It was excruciatingly slow work, but completely worth it. Like I said above, I had to stop halfway through because I ran out of room in the processor, but my friend said that about halfway through you can start pouring milk in slowly anyway. The danger is usually over by then.
-When I returned the whole mixture to the stove, I added half a tablespoon of ground cardamom and two large but paper thin slices of ginger. I removed the ginger after cooling the custard in an ice bath. I would add more ginger next time, but that's just me.
-I chilled the custard overnight, added the heavy cream whipped to soft peaks, and then chilled the whole thing another hour (probably unnecessary, but I had other things I needed to do).
-I churned the mixture for about 25 minutes. That's longer than Carb Lover's been doing, but it's over a quart of ice cream and my kitchen was warm.
Five hours later, it was heavenly. Fluffy, creamy, slow to melt, spicy, sweet, perfect. This morning, it was still scoopable with a sturdy metal spoon but needed a few minutes at room temperature to be spoonable.
New trick: freezing all utensils and containers. I froze the plastic container that I use to store ice cream, and stuck my spatula in the freezer while the ice cream churned. I figure every precaution taken to keep the ice cream from melting helps. Why didn't I think of this sooner? It's so simple.
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