Thursday, June 24, 2010

Chocolate Ice Cream and the Summer Cold

I just stumbled out of bed.  I have been under the blankets for almost 2 days now battling the mother of all summer colds.  My throat hurts-tea soothes it a little, but I need something cold to numb the pain and something with some really good antioxidants.  Like chocolate, like ice cream , like homemade chocolate ice cream.  When I was very very young I remember the first time ice cream was used as medication-my tonsils were removed and the lovely nurse taking care of me brought me some chocolate ice cream.  I remember thinking-wow I must be really sick if they are bringing me ice cream-maybe I'm dying (remember I was a silly goose of a child ).  And then I took that first spoonful and I was hooked-ice cream as medication, far better than pain pills, or needles in the derriere-far far better !  That little moment set the stage for me and probably thousands of others who now reach for ice cream for comfort.  When I'm down or like today when my throat feels like its stuffed with broken glass every time I cough, reaching for a bowl of  ice cream takes me back to that hospital bed  and that moment when the ice cream hit the back of my throat -that  cool creamy numbing sensation-just what the doctor ordered.  Maybe I should put the ice cream in one of those "break glass for emergencies "cabinets. I'll have to think about that.  But for now, I'm setting up my mise en place,putting the Donvier in the freezer and sitting back with my cup of tea until my magic medication,aka homemade chocolate ice cream is ready!  And of course I went to the specialist for advice, Ice Cream Maker extraordinaire-David Lebovitz and his book "The Perfect Scoop".  Thanks David !

Chocolate Ice Cream
adapted from A Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz
Makes about 1 quart
2 cups heavy cream
3 tablespoons unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder ( I used  E. Guittard Cocoa Rouge)
5 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate ( I used Scharffen Berger Unsweetened 99% Cacao)
1 cup whole milk ( I substituted buttermilk here-gave a nice light tang to the finished product)
¾ cup granulated sugar
Pinch of salt
5 large egg yolks
½ teaspoon vanilla extract

1. Warm 1 cup of the cream with the cocoa powder in a medium saucepan, whisking to thoroughly blend the cocoa. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer at a very low boil for 30 seconds, whisking constantly. Remove from the heat and add the chopped chocolate, stirring until smooth. Then stir in the remaining 1 cup cream. Pour the mixture into a large bowl, scraping the saucepan as thoroughly as possible, and set a mesh strainer on top of the bowl.

2. Warm the milk, sugar, and salt in the same saucepan. In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolk. Slowly pour the warm milk into the egg yolks, whisking constantly, then scrape the warmed egg yolks back into the saucepan.

3. Stir the mixture constantly over the medium heat with a heatproof spatula, scraping the bottom as you stir, until the mixture thickens and coats the spatula (170°F on an instant-read thermometer). Pour the custard through the strainer and stir it into the chocolate mixture until smooth, then stir in the vanilla. Stir until cool over an ice bath.

4. Chill the mixture thoroughly in the refrigerator, then freeze it in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. (If the cold mixture is too thick to pour into your machine, whisk it vigorously to thin it out.)

So I just finished chilling and churning the ice cream and all I can say is OMG-I'm in Paris at Berthillon-really, seriously, this recipe is crazy delicious-maybe it was the substitute of the buttermilk for the whole milk, maybe it's just my summer cold hallucinations, or maybe just maybe it's a recipe that produces some of the most chocolaty,creamy ice cream I have tasted this side of Berthillon, Paris.  The first spoonful literally took me immediately to the Île Saint-Louis  and my first taste of Berthillon Chocolate Ice Cream. October 2004, sunshine streaming through the oak trees, a crisp cool wind blowing of the Seine and the most indescribable taste in the world-no adjectives or superlatives can describe it.   I didn't even want to try the other flavors after I tasted the chocolate.  Now I have a way to time travel back to Paris with this recipe-Merci beau coup David Lebovitz..Merci beau coup... 

(From The Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz)


bellini valli said...

David Lebovitz is the King of ice cream. My Donvier is in the freezer and waiting.

Seattle Pastry Girl said...

I'm thinking pistachio may be next !

redmenace said...

I always wanted my tonsils removed like Cindy on the Brady Bunch so that I could have all the ice cream I wanted. This looks absolutely delicious. I hope you're feeling a bit better now?

Seattle Pastry Girl said...

Thank you-the ice cream was wonderful on the throat !