Thursday, April 1, 2010

Pretzels and Beer

I did it.  I couldn't help myself.  I tried to wait, tried to be patient and then I went ahead and did it anyway.  I made ice cream.  This is usually an activity I pursue in the summer when it's sunny and warm and the days are lazy.  Not so much when you're still wearing a fleece, turning up the heat and slogging through 10 inches of rain.  But you know what, I'm a rebel.

I'll let you in on a dirty little secret which made me very unpopular in college.  I hate beer.  I've tried and it ain't happening.  A cocktail or a glass of wine? Yes, please!  Beer?  Yuck.

However, if I'm going to be a rebel, I might as well go all the way.  Pretzels and beer in ice cream.    This is so good I may have to go back to my college campus and bring a plastic cup of it to the next kegger.

I bought some Chocolate Stout and some milk chocolate covered pretzels and added them to a milk chocolate ice cream base.  The bitterness of the beer balances the sweetness of the milk chocolate.  It adds a depth of flavor that is sophisticated and intriguing.  Don't be tempted to sub semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate.  It just won't be the same.  The ice cream base is adapted from A Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz.  If you don't have this book, run out and get it.  It's great. 

Chocolate Stout Ice Cream with Pretzels
Makes 1 1/2 Quarts

7 oz. milk chocolate, chopped
1 cup whole milk
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 t kosher salt
4 large egg yolks
1 cup heavy cream
3/4 cup Chocolate Stout
1 t vanilla
5 oz. milk chocolate covered pretzels, roughly chopped

1. Finely chop milk chocolate and set aside in a bowl.  Set a strainer over the bowl.
2. Combine milk, sugar and salt in a medium saucepan and warm on stove.  Do not let it boil.
3. In a separate bowl, whisk egg yolks until combined.
4. Very slowly, add the warmed milk, sugar and salt to the egg yolks, whisking the whole time.  You don't want to make scrambled eggs so go slowly and whisk constantly.
5. Now add the whole mixture back to the saucepan and return it to the stove over medium heat.  With a spatula, stir mixture constantly.  Keep scraping the bottom of the pan.  The custard mixture is done when it thickens and starts to coat the spatula.
6. Pour the hot custard mixture through the strainer and into the bowl with the chopped chocolate.
7. Gently stir until chocolate is melted and combined with the custard.
8. Add the cream, vanilla and chocolate stout to the custard.
9. Cool and chill mixture 4 hours or more.
10.  Freeze in your ice cream maker.  Stir in the pretzels only when mixture is finished churning in the ice cream maker.  Transfer to containers and freeze.

1 comment:

sue said...

this looks amazing ~ please make it next time you're in narragansett ~ and invite us!