One of the best ways to determine whether you’ve managed to really nail the theory behind a process is to successfully generate an end result with it, without referring to your notes. This last Easter weekend, I managed to do just that at a retreat in a tiny cabin on a quiet, sleepy island. The kitchen was surprisingly well appointed and included an ice cream maker, so naturally I had to do something using it. It was clearly a success; one of the cabin-mates proclaimed “I don’t like ice cream, and I love this,” and took a photo to commemorate the event (pictured below), and others ate their furtively to avoid alerting the rest of the group to the presence of the ice cream and having to share.
To ensure a smooth, scoopable texture in the resulting ice cream, I used three techniques: adding a bit of cornstarch while cooking the custard to assist thickening and absorb extra water; adding a little alcohol after the custard was done to lower the freezing point; and thoroughly chilling the custard in the freezer until it was just starting to freeze around the edges to ensure an instant freeze in the churn. I don’t have much in the way of precise measurements, but I’m fairly confident I could make something similarly good again.