Another year has passed and I must say that it's been quite a good year. No, it's not my Bloggy's birthday yet, but it was mine just this past week. Thanks to some wonderful friends and family, I had such a great time. This year was Mexican food and Bloody Caesar's....oh and a delicious lamb burger with goat's cheese on my actual birthday....not to mention the souvlaki's tonight. (I think a diet might be in the cards pretty soon).
Nevertheless what my waist thinks, it was totally all worth it! I'm not really sure why it's taken me so long to update my blog, but...I won't lie, I've kind of been enjoying some down time after the holidays. Having my birthday shortly after Christmas has its ups and downs. For one thing, I usually get so much for Christmas that I don't really need or want anything else for my birthday (I know, I know, it's not all about the gifts, but come on!) Which brings me to the positive aspect, being that I'm still in the mood to open gifts, so....hooray for more gifts! (Don't lie, you all love receiving gifts).
I actually can't wait to get back into a little more of a routine. I decided this year that I would try out something new, so I've joined an art class for watercolour painting. I find watercolour paintings to be so fluid and ethereal. There's such a dreamy aspect to them, I think it's one of my favorite types of art. So perhaps I will finally learn how to do it. Depending on the results, I might keep you folks updated on how it goes (so far, apparently I have the abilities of a 5 year old).
Another new thing, keeping a stock of ice cream in the freezer at all times. Ice cream maker attachement = best thing ever. I actually got one last year for Christmas but have only properly used it just now. Have I ever told you how much I love ice cream? I mean, how much I really love ice cream? As in it's one of my most favorite kinds of dessert of all time. So when I made this chocolate ice cream, I knew right then and there that I had a winner. This is honestly the best chocolate ice cream I have ever tasted. Forget anything else...this is seriously it. What's that? It's too cold for ice cream?
PUT A TUQUE ON!
Then go make this ice cream. You will love it.
Fudgey Chocolate Ice Cream
This ice cream is so velvety and creamy. I'm all for fancy flavours, but at the end of the day, I'll take a simple but rich chocolate ice cream over any other. I believe that quality ingredients are key to the success of any recipe, so make sure you use the best chocolate and cocoa you can afford. You'll truly taste the difference and your taste buds will thank you for it :)
Yields about 1 - 1 1/2 litres
Recipe source: The Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz
2 cups (500 ml) 35% whipping cream
3 tbsp (21 g) unsweetened cocoa powder
5 oz (140 g) bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 cup (250 ml) whole milk (3.25%)
3/4 cup (150 g) sugar
pinch of salt
5 large egg yolks
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Warm up 1 cup (250 ml) of the cream with the cocoa powder in a medium sauce pan, whisking to blend the cocoa. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and let simmer for about 30 seconds. Remove from heat and immediately add chopped chocolate. Let sit for about 1 minute then stir until smooth. Stir in the remaining 1 cup of cream. Pour the mixture into a large bowl and set a fine strainer on top of the bowl. (Why not just boil all the cream at once? Keeping half of it aside will help cool down the mixture faster. 1 cup of hot cream is enough to melt the chocolate so the rest is used to speed up the cooling process.)
Warm the milk, sugar and salt in the same sauce pan (do not boil). In another medium bowl, whisk the egg yolks. Slowly pour the warm milk into the yolks while stirring constantly, a little at a time. You are now tempering egg yolks :) Scrape the warmed yolks into the same sauce pan. Stir the mixture constantly over low - medium heat with a heat-proof spatula or wooden spoon until mixture starts to thicken and coats the back of the spoon. (Test: run a finger across the back of the spatula, if the mixture stays in place and doesn't run it's ready OR also check temperature: should be between 80-84 C). Pour the custard through the strainer (very important!) and stir into the chocolate mixture until smooth. Stir in the vanilla.
Stir until cool over an ice bath and then cool thoroughly in the refrigerator. Freeze in your ice cream maker according to manufacturer's instructions. Pour into a container and freeze for at least 2 hours in freezer.