Rum Ice Cream from Gourmet Magazine, November 2011

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Dudette has every reason to hate me today. Sure, she had all the turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and every other conceivable Thanksgiving dish available to her. Of course we had a table dedicated solely to the desserts, including pumpkin and apple pies, pecan pie muffins and more.

You see, I made ice cream earlier this week. She knew I was making ice cream and waited patiently (as far as a 5 year-old is able to be patiently) for the moment when it would be served. Even at this young age she knows that home made ice cream is the bomb. It leaves the store bought stuff in the dust.

She also knew that this ice cream was reserved for the end of the Thanksgiving feast. It had a date with a slice or two of apple pie. So, she waited. And waited.

The day came. The pie was served. With the ice cream. The Rum Ice Cream.

Have you ever seen a child spit out ice cream? I hadn’t until yesterday.

The Process
This is a basic custard-style ice cream. Cream, milk, brown sugar, nutmeg and eggs are carefully cooked over medium heat. The trick is to keep the custard hot enough to get thick, but not let it come to a full simmer at all.

If you it does come to a boil by mistake because you’re taking care of a youngster that demands your attention every minute of the day, you’ll end up with a separated mess. It looks like a combination of curdled milk and baby throw-up (which is basically curdled milk).  Not that I know from experience or anything.

Once the custard reaches 175 on a candy thermometer (or coats the back of a wooden spoon), pour it into a bowl, stir in the rum and put the bowl in the refrigerator until totally cool. All day works.

When it’s time to make the ice cream, pour the mixture into an ice cream maker and let it whirl.

The Verdict
As you’ve surmised, Dudette hated this. That’s why I only gave her a tiny test bite and had the garbage can ready to be used. For adults though, this is eyes-roll-back-in-your-head good. Rich and very, very rummy. Ok, maybe a little too rummy. Hubby thought it could be dialed back a little.

This is the perfect apple pie companion though. It’s like they were made to go together. I’m not a big liquor person so I’d agree that it’s a bit strong, but it is delicious, and creamy, and rich.

What I’d Do Different Next Time
 I could see myself dropping the amount of run to 1/4 cup or. Other than toning down the rum flavor a bit, it would also help the ice cream to firm up a bit more than it did. Even after being in the freezer for two days, it was very soft when I scooped it up.

Rum Ice Cream - print this recipe
from Gourmet Magazine, November 2008

2 cups heavy cream
1 cup whole milk
3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar, divided
1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg
2 large eggs
1/3 cup dark rum

Bring cream, milk, 1/2 cup brown sugar, and nutmeg to a simmer in a heavy medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring.

Meanwhile, whisk together eggs, remaining 1/4 cup brown sugar, and 1/8 teaspoon salt in a large bowl. Add cream mixture in a slow stream, whisking. Return to saucepan and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, until mixture coats back of spoon and registers 175°F on an instant-read thermometer (do not boil).

Immediately strain custard through a fine-mesh sieve into a metal bowl. Stir in rum and chill custard at least 6 hours.
Freeze in ice cream maker, then transfer to an airtight container and put in freezer to harden, about 2 hours.

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