Sometime over the last week, the leaves have started to change here. It’s really feeling like fall, and I can’t get enough of it. Even with the cooler weather, I’ve had nearly insatiable cravings for ice cream, which makes sense because it’s my favorite dessert. Also, it might have something to do with this:
That’s right! Eric and I have a little girl on the way, and she should be here around March 11 of next year. I’m hoping things won’t change too much around here, but I can’t promise that there won’t be more dessert posts. This pumpkin ice cream is a great way to transition into the cooler fall weather. I love ice cream year round, but I reserve pumpkin ice cream solely for this time of year. It seems to make it more special that way. This one has all of the flavors of pumpkin pie, especially if you top it with freshly whipped cream and graham cracker crumbs. Though it won’t be replacing pumpkin pie on our Thanksgiving table, it’s nice to have an alternative for all the other days of fall.
Pumpkin Ice Cream
Makes 1 quart
5 large egg yolks
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cinnamon stick
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup pumpkin puree
Whisk the egg yolks together in a medium bowl and set aside. Combine the milk, cream, sugar, spices and salt in a medium saucepan set over medium heat. Cook until the edges begin to bubble.
Slowly pour the warm liquid over the egg yolks, whisking constantly, then pour the egg yolk mixture back into the saucepan. Continue cooking over medium heat, stirring constantly and scraping the bottom, until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon (between 160º and 170ºF on an instant read thermometer).
Set a mesh strainer over a large bowl. Pour the mixture through the strainer and then whisk in brown sugar until dissolved. Place bowl in an ice bath and stir until cool, then chill completely in the refrigerator, preferably overnight. Once chilled, whisk in the vanilla and pumpkin. Press through the strainer once more and then freeze in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions. Freeze for at least an hour before serving.