Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Bourbon Ice Cream

By now most of you know, I love bourbon.  I know a lot of people who say “Whoo, I can’t drink bourbon.  Too strong!”  And it’s true, bourbon is not for sissies.  It’s not a frou-frou drink, but I think it’s still something that can be made feminine.  Just look at the beauty of this gorgeous Manhattan I made last fall.  I think a lot of people are probably just intimidated by the powerful aroma & taste of bourbon.  Or perhaps they had a bad experience with a not-so-good bourbon.  That’s sad, because, I think bourbon is such a complex spirit with a large palate of flavors that it can pull from to produce a unique flavor experience.  In my opinion, in most expertly mixed drinks, when you order a vodka-mixed drink, you’re tasting the flavors of the other things in the cocktail + the alcohol.  But when you order a bourbon cocktail, you’re tasting the spirit enhanced by complimentary flavors.  The bourbon is the star, and the other ingredients are the supporting cast.

I used Four Roses for this ice cream.

As I step down from my soap box, let me encourage to you to try bourbon.  Whether it be for the first time, or to give it a second chance.  For anyone wanting a reintroduction into the flavors of bourbon, how about using it in the kitchen?  Cake is a good place to start.  Dessert bars.  And now, ice cream!  Obviously, ice cream is a DELICIOUS way to eat anything (corn ice cream anyone?).  This ice cream calls for a mere 5 Tablespoons, so it’s definitely not going to scream “BOOOOOOZE!” while you eat it.  I actually cheated and snuck in a little more bourbon, because instead of adding regular vanilla, I used vanilla I made myself by steeping fresh, plump vanilla beans in a bottle of bourbon.

To describe this ice cream, I would say it is grown up & sophisticated.  Definitely not something you would be serving to kids (duh).  Not just because of the fact there is alcohol in it, but be cause there’s no way they could appreciate the smooth & subtle flavor essence, with hints of caramel & vanilla that bourbon brings to the table in this ice cream.  This ice cream has elegance & class!  I kinda wish now I’d enjoyed it in a crystal goblet.  Except for the fact I don’t have one.  Hmm…

Now, you’re probably gonna want to know what this deliciousness is that is drizzled on top of the ice cream, right?  Salted Caramel Sauce.  Yeah, you’re gonna want to make that too!


Bourbon Ice Cream

Yield: about 5 cups

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 9 hours 30 min

I suggest choosing a higher quality bourbon for this ice cream. I went with Four Roses, but you can also consider Woodford Reserve or Knob Creek. Also, this ice cream will set softer than others. It's likely due to the high alcohol content that makes freezing more difficult. I suggest definitely giving your custard plenty of time to rest, such as overnight, in the coolest part of the fridge, to ensure it's as cold as possible before churning.


2 cups heavy whipping cream
2 cups half and half
1/2 cup nonfat dry milk powder
6 large egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup (packed) dark brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
5 tablespoons bourbon
1 tablespoon vanilla extract


Bring first 3 ingredients to simmer in heavy large saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring until milk powder dissolves completely. Remove from heat.

Combine egg yolks, sugar, brown sugar, and coarse salt in large bowl; whisk until thick and blended. Gradually whisk hot cream mixture into yolk mixture. Return mixture to same saucepan. Stir over medium-low heat until custard thickens enough to leave path on back of spoon when finger is drawn across and temperature registers 175°F to 178°F, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Mix in bourbon and vanilla extract. Refrigerate custard uncovered until cold, stirring occasionally, at least 3 hours. DO AHEAD: Custard can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and keep refrigerated until ready to churn.

Churn according to your ice cream maker's instructions.

Bon Appétit October 2010 via Epicurious

To further spread the knowledge & joy of bourbon, here’s some link love from other bloggers.  I get so happy to see bourbon featured on blogs, and I enjoyed reading each of these posts.

Cook Eat Pray completed the Bourbon Trail. (Pt 1 & Pt 2)

Veggie by Season did a Bourbon Inspired Dinner & Tasting Flight

Joy the Baker made Sweet Tea Bourbon Cocktails

and Bunky Cooks did an in-depth tour at Woodford Reserve & made Bourbon Sweet Potato Biscuits

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21 Responses to “Bourbon Ice Cream”

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