Creating ice cream at home can be a daunting task, especially if you are without an ice cream maker and are not in the place to buy a new one. But come summer months, with heat levels setting records across the country, having access to freshly frozen ice cream in the comfort of your own air conditioned kitchen is something worth working (just a little) for.
The key to good ice cream makers is their churning process, in which the custard/cream base is churned while being frozen to produce the smooth and creamy treat that we all love. It is this constant movement that prevents our beloved ice cream from becoming overly icy or chewy. While this is of course more easily done by a machine, the churning movement is attainable by hand if done properly.
Read on to learn how to churn your ice cream by hand.
Photo courtesy of ulterior epicure via Flickr/cc
To begin, create the ice cream/custard base of your choice, be it mint, vanilla, rum, or whatever else your preference (read on for our favorite ice cream base recipes). Once the base is created, you'll need to let it rest in a bowl over an ice bath. This quick chill is an important step before popping the creamy liquid in the freezer.
Once cool, pour the base into a chilled pan. Sit this in the freezer for 30 minutes.
Once the sides begin to freeze and harden a bit, pull the ice cream out of the freezer and beat until all frozen or icy parts are broken. You can do this by hand with a fork, but using an electric whisk or hand beater is even better. After the batch is completely beaten, put it back into your freezer.
Continue this process every half hour for a total of 2-3 hours, upon which the ice cream should be fully frozen but still smooth and creamy.
For some great ice cream bases, try our roasted pistachio, caramel, or rich chocolate ice cream recipes.