This post is a few days late but despite the excessive sweating and ridiculous heat I endured this summer, I am not quite ready to say goodbye. While I am looking forward to dusting off the beloved UGG boots that adorn my feet the minute temps dip below 60, putting away my sundresses brought a tear to my eye. (Yes, I know that’s a bit dramatic but this chica has a special relationship with her sundresses…even the ones with empire waists that at certain angles make her look preggers)
This summer, the last one in my 20′s, was emblematic of how fortunate I have been to make all of my 20′s quite memorable. My most memorable moment of the summer of 2010 – holding down the dance floor at my husband’s cousin’s wedding in Barbados with his 85 year old great uncle.
Yes folks – Uncle Errol is 85 years old, an avid swimmer (swims a couple hours each day in the ocean) and puts today’s fist pumpers to shame! Since I don’t swim, it took quite a few rum punches to give me the energy to keep up with him.
So I thought the best way to say see ya later to summer would be to make not just any ice cream, but the best ice cream I have made to date. Ya’ll already know I have an immense bond with the confection. But this ice cream took it to new levels all thanks to two special ingredients.
Vanilla Bean Baby – It doesn’t get more satisfying than those little gems.
And the only way vanilla bean can taste any better is when you throw toasted coconut into the mix. Don’t fight me on this – I know what I’m talking about.
This ice cream isn’t as easy to make as some of the others featured on A Chica Bakes. But I promise you will be handsomely rewarded at the end. It’s silky, creamy, smooth and sexy with a punch of flavor from the vanilla and toasted coconut. After I had it I had a jolt of energy similar to the one I got from the Barbadian rum punches a couple of weeks ago and had Uncle Errol been here we would have dance all over my living room.
If you don’t feel anything after you try it, come find me and I’ll compensate you with a rum punch or two.
Hope you all had a great summer and continue to make what’s left of 2010 memorable.
Toasted Coconut Ice Cream
1 cup shredded coconut, preferably unsweetened
1 cup whole milk
2 cups heavy cream
3/4 cup sugar
Big pinch of salt
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
5 large egg yolks
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spread coconut on a baking sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes, stirring it frequently until it gets golden brown.
Warm milk, 1 cup of the heavy cream, sugar and salt in a medium saucepan and add the coconut. Using a the back of a knife, scrape the vanilla seeds out of the bean and into the warm milk mixture and add the pod as well. Cover it, remove from the heat and let the mixture steep at room temperature for 1 hour.
Rewarm the milk mixture. Set a strainer over another medium saucepan and pass the mixture through the strainer and into the saucepan. Make sure to press down on the coconut to extract as much flavor as possible. Discard the vanilla bean pieces and coconut.
Pour the remaining heavy cream into a large bowl, set a clean strainer on top and set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and the slowly pour the warm milk mixture into the egg yolks while mixing constantly. Then scrape the entire mixture back in the saucepan. Stir the mixture constantly over medium heat with a wooden spoon, until the mixture thickens and coats the back of the spoon. Pour this custard through a strainer into the bowl with the reserved heavy cream, mix in the vanilla extract and stir until cool over an ice bath.
Chill the mixture thoroughly in your refrigerator then freeze in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions.