Today marks the first birthday of my blog – Happy Birthday Experimental Epicurean! I thought it would be fitting to celebrate with a typical birthday treat and I settled on ICE CREAM (any excuse for ice cream is a good excuse, right?). I decided to break the cycle of the chocolate vs. vanilla debate and went a little more exotic with a Cardamom & Fig Butter Ice Cream. I also just had to have a bounty of balloons, since, well, my kids have been begging for balloons these days and it seemed fitting to add balloons to our party.
There are two types of ice cream: those that do not require eggs, referred to as Philadelphia style, and those that do require eggs, which are considered custard-style. I often like to make a custard-style, since I love the extra creaminess. Custard-style ice cream takes longer to make since it requires tempering the eggs with hot milk or cream and then chilling prior to the freezing step. Trust me when I say that waiting the extra time for the rich, velvety ice cream is worth it.
In addition to the creamy base, I have spiced it up with some ground cardamom and swirled in fig butter. The result is a decadent treat that will wow adults, and leave the kids searching for more. In fact, I almost wish I had two ice cream makers so that I could have made a double batch!
Cardamom & Fig Butter Ice Cream
2 large eggs
1 ½ cups half & half
½ cup white sugar
1 cup heavy whipping cream
2 teaspoons ground cardamom
¼ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup fig butter (found in the jelly aisle)
Add the eggs to a food processor and process until smooth.
Add the half and half and sugar to a medium saucepan and place over low heat. Stir until the sugar dissolves and the milk comes to a boil. Remove from the heat, an then with the food processor running, slowly pour the hot half & half into the eggs through the feed tube. Process until smooth. Pour the mixture into a large bowl and let cool slightly, then stir in the cream, cardamom, salt, and vanilla. Cover and refrigerate until chilled.
Add the mixture to an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions and chill for about 30 minutes. When finished, the ice cream will be soft. Swirl in the fig butter, leaving streaks of the fig butter throughout the ice cream. It can be eaten as is, or chilled further in the freezer for a firmer texture. Store ice cream in the freezer until ready to serve.
If you don’t have an ice cream maker, the kitchn has a great link for how to chill your ice cream without a machine.