Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Magic Homemade Ice Cream

Note:  This post appeared in last week's edition of The Copenhagen Post.

I just moved, and now I have a freezer. It sits nicely atop my fridge. Never mind that both are not much bigger than what you’d find in a child’s dollhouse. I’m just happy they’re there. After all a freezer is not necessarily a given in housing rentals here.

It would be fair to say that I’ve lowered my appliance standards considerably in the three years I’ve lived in Denmark. I remember the moment I walked into the kitchen of my first rental and spotted the place--not much larger than a shoebox--where I would be keeping my food cold. What folIowed was an endless rant about the restrictions that such a fridge represents. Unless you had a mini-fridge in your college dorm room, where I come from people are simply unaccustomed- and ill-equipped to dealing with the diminutive European refrigerators. Coping with one sheds a whole new light on grocery shopping, meal planning, and food storage. You mean I can’t fit two liter bottles of Pepsi and boxes of home delivery pizza in my fridge? I’m kidding. I know some of you think that’s all we Americans consume. But I have news for you. We eat hamburgers, too.

In the beginning a week wouldn’t go by that I didn’t whine about the lack of adequate fridge space. But fast forward three years, and I’ve made incredible strides. As least that’s what my therapist tells me. Through the years, I’ve gradually learned how to optimize my small fridge and--now that I’ve moved--freezer. I’ve adapted my food shopping, meal planning, and cooking in a way that fits my lifestyle and, as luck would have it, the inside of my fridge. Tall items such as milk, orange juice, and white wine are tucked into the door. Dairy, bacon, and lunch meat go on the top shelf. Alas, this kind of transformation does not happen overnight. Every couple of months things still get out of control in my fridge. That’s when I take a step back and say, Okay, you can either make a therapy appointment or organize this fridge. And you know what, a clean and tidy fridge is the best therapy.

But back to the freezer. As a way to inaugurate mine, I made ice cream. For months I have been guarding this special ice cream recipe like a hawk protecting its young, in anticipation that I would one day have a freezer again. This is not your run-of-the mill frozen dessert. It’s magic. Truly. What gives it special properties? First and foremost, it requires no ice cream maker or throwing a coffee can back and forth until your arms ache. Better still, it’s comprised of basic kitchen staples and is, quite simply, extraordinary. The texture is sublime and the taste will leave reaching for “just one more spoonful.” Only make sure you have enough room in your freezer.
Magic Homemade Ice Cream

Recipe courtesy of Christopher Kimball

Note: You know that cherry sauce that is ubiquitous in Denmark this time of year? Sure, you can serve it over the traditional Danish ris a la mande, but why not heat some up and spoon it over your ice cream. I guarantee you’ll love it. Also, since the vanilla flavor tends to be sweeter than the chocolate variety, try serving it with a plain cake, such as pound cake, almond cake, or other lightly sweetened cake.

Ingredients (in U.S. and metric measurements)

1/2c...200g sweetened condensed milk
1 oz...30g white chocolate (if you are making chocolate ice cream use 20g white and 30g dark - 70% or higher - chocolate. The chocolate flavor requires more chocolate than he vanilla variety.
1T...1 soup spoon of vanilla extract
pinch of salt
1/4c...60g sour cream (creme fraiche)
1 1/4c...300g cold heavy cream (38%)


1. Make base. Gently heat sweetened condensed milk and chocolate. Stir until chocolate melts, this should take less than a minute. Let cool. Stir in vanilla, salt, and sour cream. Set aside.

2. Whip heavy cream with electric mixer on medium-high speed until soft peaks begin to form, about 2 minutes. Fold one-third of the whipped cream into the chocolate mix until well incorporated. Fold remaining whipped cream into the chocolate mix until completely incorporated and smooth.

3. Scrape mixture into an airtight container and freeze until firm, at least 6 hours or up to 2 weeks. Serve.

1 comment:

  1. I have been living in Copenhagen for just over a year and I completely understand your frustration with the fridge sizes here!! I went back to the US for my sister's wedding a couple of months ago and I spent a lot of time opening up my parent's HUGE, American fridge in awe. I really enjoy reading your blog!