Wednesday I celebrated my birthday! Not a big deal. After the 21st birthday I think they all feel the same. Do I feel a year older? Not really. I feel healthy, happy and very satisfied at where I am in my life right now. I have a healthy 13 month old son, an incredible husband and two dogs that love me more than life itself. That’s all that really matters isn’t it? I wouldn’t trade all of this to be back at 21. No way! Now don’t get me wrong…21 was great! But I have to say 32 feels even better!
We celebrated my birthday like we do every January 1st, with pork and sauerkraut for good luck and my choice of dessert! This years birthday dessert was this Sea Salt Caramel Truffle Ice Cream. Every year my husband makes me my birthday dessert and this year he was even more excited to make it since ice cream is his weakness. I’m telling you folks, this man can turn down any dessert put in front of him unless it’s ice cream.
I’ve had salted caramel ice cream on my to-do list for quite some time, and I was so happy when it exceeded my expectations. It is perfection! Salty, sweet and oh so creamy! I snuck so many tastes of this ice cream before it even hit the ice cream maker that I am surprised I had any left to take a picture of!
Milk chocolate caramel chunks folded into salted caramel ice cream.
Yield: 1 quart
2 cups whole milk, divided
1 1/2 cups sugar
4 tablespoons salted butter
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 cups heavy cream
5 large egg yolks
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 Ghirardelli Milk and Caramel Squares, chopped
Set a medium sized bowl over a large container of ice water. Pour 1 cup of the milk into the inner bowl, and rest a mesh strainer on top of it.
Spread 1 1/2 cups sugar in an even layer in a medium-sized saucepan. Cook over medium heat, until the edges begin to melt. Using a heatproof utensil, gently stir the liquefied sugar from the bottom and edges towards the center, stirring, until all the sugar is dissolved. Continue to cook stirring infrequently until the caramel starts smoking and begins to smell like it’s just about to burn.
Remove from heat and stir in the butter and salt, until butter is melted, then gradually whisk in the cream. The caramel may harden and seize, but return it to the heat and continue to stir over low heat until any hard caramel is melted. Stir in 1 cup of the milk.
In a separate bowl, whisk the yolks together until smooth. Slowly whisk about 1 cup of the hot caramel/milk mixture into the yolks to temper them. Then slowly whisk the tempered yolk mixture back into the remaining hot caramel/milk mixture. Continue to cook the custard mixture over medium heat until it is very hot but not simmering (170-180 degrees). Immediately pour custard into bowl set in the ice bath and let cool, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes. Stir in vanilla extract. Remove the custard mixture from the ice bath. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate until very cold (40 degrees), at least 4 hours and up to 24 hours.
Pour the mixture into the ice cream canister and churn following the manufacturer’s instructions until the mixture resembles the consistency of thick whipped cream. Add the chopped chocolate caramel squares and continue churning until the mixture resembles soft served ice cream.
Transfer the ice cream to an airtight container. Cover the container and freeze the ice cream until it is firm, about 3 hours.
Source: adapted from David Lebovitz
One Year Ago: Oatmeal-Spice Cookies
Two Years Ago: Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms with Spinach and Goat Cheese
Three Years Ago: Pork Roast with Sauerkraut and Kielbasa