Vanilla ice cream that will not get too hard and is wonderfully creamy. You don’t even need an ice cream maker!
I have been trying a lot of recipes for ice cream. Often, cream or milk (or a mixture of both) is cooked into a custard with egg yolks and then frozen. It tastes great and has a good texture the first day, but after a few days or weeks in the freezer it gets very hard. I have tried Alton Brown’s version that does not contain eggs but has a higher contents of sugar and fat but found that while I loved the flavour, it still became too hard. I have tried adding alcohol to prevent it from getting too hard but find that the taste is noticeable.
Then I came across a recipe I had never seen before. It is from Julia Child in “The Art of French Cooking Vol. II” and is made of Italian Meringue mixed with whipped cream. It turned out to be overly sweet, so I adjusted the sugar content and found my absolutely perfect ice cream! It stays softer than all the other ice creams, probably due to the sugar cooked into a syrup and the whipped ingredients, and is wonderfully creamy and delicious!
It is still sweeter than conventional ice cream so it is perfect matched with a bittersweet chocolate sauce or unsweetened warm raspberry sauce!
The egg whites actually become cooked by adding hot syrup so don’t worry about raw egg whites. If you don’t have vanilla sugar, add instead 1/2 – 1 tsp vanilla extract.
Tip: Did you know that egg whites freeze well? Whenever I make a recipe that only calls for egg yolks, I keep the whites in a little container in the freezer. That way, I always have egg whites on hand. Just let them come to room temperature before using.
- 6 egg whites, large
- pinch of salt
- 3 tbsp vanilla sugar
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup water
- 2 cups cream
- Bring the sugars and water to a boil. Let boil until the temperature reaches 235 degrees, which is the soft ball stage. If you don’t have a thermometer, simply let it simmer for about 5 minutes after it has come to a boil.
- Whip the egg whites with the salt until soft peaks form. With the mixer running, pour the hot sugar syrup in a thin stream into the egg whites and continue to beat until the bowl is cool to the touch, for about 10 minutes.
- In a separate bowl, whip the cream until soft peaks form.
- Fold the whipped cream into the cooled egg white mixture. Pour into a container and freeze for 3-4 hours.