toasted almond ice cream

This ice cream has a fantastically strong almond flavor, and would go fabulously with fruit of all kinds. Suzanne Goin (Sunday Suppers again) pairs it with cherry-- I found this recipe because I desperately wanted to make the roasted cherry tart-- but as it turns out it was easier to get the ice cream done first. I'd also just made both the brown butter and the olive oil ice creams and I thought perhaps my roommates might like something more 'normal'.

When I do it again I may cut the amount of almond extract a bit, as the flavor is so strong some may think it borders on the artificial (do make sure you use pure almond extract!). This ice cream is full of toasted almonds, and is great for people that love chunky ice cream. You could add cherries or chocolate as well.

Almond Ice Cream
from Sunday Suppers at Lucques by Suzanne Goin

2 1/2 cups raw whole almonds
2 cups whole milk
2 cups heavy cream
4 extra-large egg yolks (if you have large eggs, use 5 yolks)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp pure almond extract (or less- definitely not more)

Preheat the oven to 375.

Toast the almonds on a baking sheet in the oven for 10-12 minutes or until they darken slightly and smell nutty. When they've cooled, chop them coarsely.

Place 1 1/2 cups of the chopped almonds in a medium saucepan and pour in the milk and cream. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Turn off the heat, cover, and let the flavors infuse for at least thirty minutes.

Bring the mixture back to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally, then turn off the heat.

Whisk the egg yolks and sugar together in a bowl. Whisk a few tablespoons of the warm cream mixture into the yolks to temper them. Slowly, add another 1/4 cup or so of the warm cream, whisking to incorporate. At this point, you can add the rest of the cream mixture in a slow, steady stream, whisking constantly. Pour the mixture back into the pot and return to the stove.

Add the almond extract and cook the custard over medium heat for 6-8 minutes, stirring frequently with a rubber spatula, scraping the bottom and sides of the pan. When it coats the back of a spatula or spoon, it's done. Strain the mixture and chill at least two hours in the refrigerator. Process in the ice cream maker and stir in the remaining almonds when it's done.

This ice cream is best within a few days of when it's made.

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