So I took the summer off. To work and relax and drink rosé with my cat. That does not mean I wasn’t baking! I was. Most definitely. I also got into arguments about the inherent misogynistic message in Grease but thats another story.
What was I baking? Tarts and cakes and cookies and so much ice cream. I didn’t have a hungry audience of half-starved college kids to feed, but I did have a bunch of hungry chefs to feed. And they appreciated my attempts at interesting ice cream flavors far more than my collegiate cohorts. The favorite flavors so far? Honey-Thyme (which interestingly everything thought I had named Honey Time to be clever, but I’m not clever), Basil White Chocolate, Absinthe (which we ate early on a Saturday morning before a huge rush of taco lovers), and the pièce de resistance, Ginger White Chocolate.
The Ginger White Chocolate ice cream uses David Lebovitz’ Ginger Ice Cream recipe and adapts it by cutting down on the sugar and adding in white chocolate. This helped in two ways. First off, the ginger flavor becomes stronger, almost herbal (or herbacious), and secondly the white chocolate smooths out the texture while adding in its own hints of vanilla and sweetness.
My boss loved it, I loved it, and my mother loved it. Winner.
How did Jethro feel about it?
Ginger White Chocolate Ice Cream
Adapted from David Lebovitz’ The Perfect Scoop
3 ounces ginger, unpeeled
2 cups cream
1 cup milk
2/3 cup sugar
Pinch of salt
5 egg yolks
4 ounces white chocolate (preferably Valrhona, but only because I’m crazy), chopped quite small
Cut the ginger in half lengthwise and then cut thin slices, trying to maximize surface area. Place in a saucepan and cover with water, until the water is above the ginger by 1/2 inch. Turn the heat to high and boil the ginger for 2 minutes. Drain the ginger, discarding the water. Return the blanched ginger to the saucepan and add in one cup cream, the milk, the sugar, and the salt. Heat until the sugar melts, then turn off the heat and cover. Let steep for one hour.
When the hour is almost up, place the rest of the cream in a bowl with a strainer on top. Place the bowl in an ice bath.
Whisk together the egg yolks. Return the saucepan to the heat and heat the ginger mixture until it starts to steam. Turn the heat off. Ladle in some of the hot milk mixture into the egg yolks, whisking the whole time, ladling in about 1 cup in total. Then put the warmed egg yolk mixture in the saucepan, whisking constantly. Turn the heat to medium, and using a wooden spoon or a heatproof spatula stir the custard until it thickens enough to coat the back of the spoon. Then pour the mixture through the strainer and into the remaining cream. Quickly add in the white chocolate and stir until it melts. Chill the custard thoroughly in the ice bath and then overnight in the fridge. Churn in your ice cream maker according to its instructions.