Last week while
goofing off on twitter taking a break from working very very hard , I got into a conversation with my friend Elle over at Elle’s New England Kitchen about the finer aspects of ice cream. (Like it tastes much better when eaten directly from the carton while standing in front of the open freezer door.) It all started because I was getting ready for a weekend of vanilla bean and creamy goodness and making up a “I NEED / WANT” list. So she says hey you know you can just freeze bananas and process the crap out of them and Waaaa laaaa – banana ice cream. Of course she SAID this to me on a MONDAY and the ice cream maker was 3 hours AWAY. Grr. So I made up for THAT tease with nachos and beer.
ANYHOO – I already KNEW ice cream was in my future as I recently spied some vanilla beans that I had forgotten we had. Swirl in some of that delicate banana gooeyness with what was already going to be killer and you have PURE SEX on a SPOON. So we recruited Kathy at A Good Appetite Renee at Flamingo Musings and Barbara at Vino Luci (Who hasn’t posted her ice cream yet but DAMN THOSE BROWNIES!) to create banana debauchery along with us. If I were you I would FEAR clicking the previous links of my partners in bananadom because if you are no where NEAR ice cream, you may just PANIC. Then again mayhem may break out just from this photo alone:
And now, because that is the kind of girl I am, I will TEACH you how to cause said mayhem. ( Yea yea, I ROCK.)
You need this:
2 cups half-and-half
1 cup whipping cream
2/3 cup sugar
2 vanilla bean, split and scraped.
Pint o’ blackberries
(Oh by the way. You ALSO need a thermometer, an ice cream maker and a food processor to pull this off flawlessly.)
Have everything? Ok…
Then you do this:
Combine the half and half, the cream, sugar and vanilla bean in a medium sauce pan and cook over medium low heat. Stirring occasionally, bring this mixture to 170°. DO NOT ALLOW TO BOIL FOR THE LOVE OF GAH!
Remove from heat and let cool slightly. Pour into non reactive, air tight container; throw in the scrapped vanilla bean pod and let cool in fridge overnight. (Must get to 40°)
About 2-3 hours before pulling out the ice cream maker, peel bananas, slice into chunks, and freeze. (If you go longer it is ok, just let them thaw a tad.)
Ok time to make the ice cream. Set up your ice cream maker (according to the manufacturers directions…) and pour in the cream and vanilla mixture. OH! Remove the pods first. (NOW rinse them and dry them and put in your sugar for yummy vanilla sugar!) Turn it on and let it run.
While the ice cream maker is doing its job, take the frozen bananas and process the bejezzus out of them in the food processor. You will need to scrape down the sides like 259,035 times, but it is worth it. Keep it up till you have what looks like ice cream.
During this time, your ice cream maker has probably done its magic and you now have some beautiful double vanilla bean ice cream forming. When you have about 5 minutes left on the ice cream. dump in the black berries. You CAN chop roughly if you like. I just tossed them in whole. While it is wrapping up it job, get out another non reactive air tight container.
Spoon some of the banana “ice cream” on the bottom of the container. Then layer with the vanilla black berry ice cream. More banana. More cream. More banana. More cream… I think you get my drift.
Then place in freezer till it sets. Sorry folks, this AGAIN may be over night.
However your patience will be paid off in SPADES because this is some of the most decadent ice cream you will ever lay your taste buds on.
Oh. You are VERY welcome.