This is my FAVORITE ice cream, ever. Homemade mint ice cream with chocolate chips. Every time I make it, it’s gone within 2 or 3 days. Whenever my parents come to visit, my dad requests it in advance because it’s his favorite, too (and he eats it all!).
The secret to its creaminess is that it’s actually a custard made with eggs (but don’t worry…they’re cooked).
Note – you need an ice cream machine/freezer for this. I got a Cuisinart ice cream machine for my birthday 2 years ago for around $50 and it has been well used year round. Once you’ve tried homemade ice cream, you won’t want to go back to store bought! Homemade is best – and easy!
Here’s the recipe:
1/2 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 cups half-and-half
1-1/2 cups heavy cream
2 teaspoons peppermint extract
6 drops green food coloring (optional)
3/4 cup chocolate chips or chunks
1. In a medium mixing bowl, beat the sugar into the eggs until thickened and pale yellow. Beat in the cornstarch and set aside.
2. Bring the half-and-half to a simmer in a heavy medium saucepan. Slowly beat the hot half-and-half into the eggs and sugar. Pour the entire mixture back into the pan and place over low heat. Stir constantly with a whisk or wooden spoon until the custard thickens slightly. Be careful not to let the mixture boil or the eggs will scramble. It usually takes about 10-15 minutes for the mixture to start thickening so be patient.
3. Remove half-and-half mixture from the heat and and pour the hot custard through a strainer into a large, clean bowl. Allow the custard to cool slightly, then stir in the heavy cream, peppermint extract, and food coloring, if using (I didn’t use any food coloring this time). Cover and refrigerate until cold or overnight.
4. Stir the chilled custard, then freeze in 1 or 2 batches in your ice cream machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions. When it becomes semifrozen, add 3/4 cup chocolate chips or chunks (the kids enjoy doing this part). When finished, the ice cream will be soft but ready to eat. For firmer ice cream, transfer to a freezer-safe container and freeze at least 2 hours. Makes about 1 quart.
* It’s best to let freeze overnight. Then when you take it out it will be hard and frozen. Let it sit out for a couple of minutes to soften and become perfectly creamy.
* The original recipe I used called for 3/4 cup sugar and 1 cup heavy cream. I think it’s just as good with a little less sugar, and better with a little more heavy cream. But don’t use more than 1-1/2 cups of heavy cream as it will then be too runny.
* Scoop it up into some ice cream cones bought at ALDI for an inexpensive and tasty treat!
* For this particular batch, for the chocolate chips I used some Nestle Toll House “Winter” Dark Chocolate & Mint Morsels, leftover from Christmastime.