Butterscotch Pecan Ice Cream

Butterscotch Pecan Ice Cream
From The Perfect Scoop, but David Lebovitz

Of course my birthday party wouldn’t have been a party without a little dessert.  Although we don’t seem to know the meaning of the phrase “a little” in the HMK, so this delicious ice cream was part of a dessert smorgasbord, really.  On pretty much every holiday requiring “romantic cuteness” John takes the shortcut to my heart via food, usually in the form of my favorite cupcakes – Sweet Mandy B’s.  And time after time he buys a half dozen cupcakes and about 10 cookies other sweet treats.  And without fail I eat all of them because he doesn’t have much of a sweet tooth.  Awesome.  So this year when we made a big batch of birthday ice cream and he STILL surprised me with the standard assortment, I was very very glad to have 10 friends coming over to help me out.  As for the ice cream, it’s definitely a boozy delight.  It’s amazing how far a tablespoon of scotch can go.  And the candied pecans…ohhhh the candied pecans.  I challenge you not to eat a handful before they ever make it into the ice cream.  On the other hand, just make a little extra and chow down!

Ingredients

Candied Pecans

  • 1 1/2 Tbsp butter, melted
  • 1 1/2 cups pecan halves
  • 1/4 tsp coarse salt

Ice Cream Base

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 5 Tbsp butter
  • 3/4 cup dark brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 tsp coarse salt
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp scotch

Preparation

Buttered Pecans

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Toss pecans with butter and salt.
  3. Spread pecans evenly on a baking sheet.  Bake 10-12 minutes, tossing halfway through.
  4. Allow to cool completely.
Ice Cream
  1. Make an ice bath in a big bowl.  Pour 1 cup of the heavy cream into a medium bowl that can nest over the ice bath.  Then next a sieve over the medium bowl.  Set aside.
  2. In a separate large bowl whisk together egg yolks.  Set aside.
  3. Melt butter in a medium sauce pan over medium heat.
  4. Stir in brown sugar and salt until well moistened.
  5. Whisk in remaining 1 cup of the cream and the milk.
  6. Warm the brown sugar and cream/milk mixture until you see little bubbles forming around the edges, but it’s in no way boiling.
  7. Very slowly pour the warmed mixture into the egg yolks, whisking constantly.  Return mixture to sauce pan.
  8. Stir the mixture constantly over medium heat until it thickens and coats the spatula.  A flat bottomed wooden spatula works best for this so you can scrape the bottom of the pan to avoid scalding.
  9. Pour the custard through the sieve so it lands in the cream, which is in a bowl that’s sitting in an ice bath (see step 1).  Stir the cream and custard until combined.
  10. Stir in vanilla and scotch.
  11. Thoroughly chill the mixture in the refrigerator.  I like to chill it over night.
  12. Freeze ice cream per your ice cream maker’s instructions.  In the last 5 minutes of freezing, add the buttered pecans.

Makes 1 1/4 quarts.

*Note: For basic ice cream making tips and info, see my original ice cream post, Thin Mint Ice Cream.  And if you want a LOT of info, buy David Lebovitz’s amazing book, The Perfect Scoop.

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