This is what I like to call the modern taste of Christmas.
Why modern? Well, because for me, the ‘taste of Christmas’ will always be fruit cake, and Christmas pudding and mince pies. Things with dried fruit, and booze and warming spices like cinnamon and cloves have the traditional spot covered.
So I guess, if those guys are the flavour equivalent Charles Dickens ‘A Christmas Carol’, then this is like Will Ferrel’s ‘Elf’. It’s punchy, your grandparents probably won’t like it, and it brings out the big kid in you. I personally think that this is a fairly elegant flavour – like a more luxurious version of mint choc chip. But I concede that not everyone will feel that way.
White chocolate is pretty elegant though; consider it as a kind of turbo-charged vanilla. It makes this ice cream intense and creamy in the best way possible, and the high bright note of the peppermint stops the whole thing from being too rich or cloying. Deelicious.
This was another little piece in my ‘try to have a white Christmas even when it’s super hot and humid’ puzzle. Peppermint is such a cooling, icy flavour that it takes me straight to the alpine peaks. And, what could be better on a hot day than a lovely ice cream? BEST OF BOTH WORLDS!
So how’s your December going? Have you had time to make ice cream and relax? Or too busy running around trying to shop for your impossibly mysterious and difficult to buy for family (*cough*myfamily*cough*)? Either way I really hope you try this, it’s absolutely perfect no matter where in the world you are!
White Chocolate Peppermint Ice Cream
Created by Sarah Coates for The Sugar Hit, using the technique from Jeni Britton Bauer.
Makes approx 1 litre.
4 oz (100g) white chocolate
3 tbsp (40g) cream cheese, at room temperature
pinch of salt
2 cups (500ml) milk
1 tbsp + 1 tsp cornflour
1 cup (250ml) cream
2/3 cup sugar
2 tbsp light corn syrup (if you can’t find this in Australia, glucose is the best substitute)
1 tsp vanilla extract
First, take 3 0z (75g) of the white chocolate and melt it. Chop the remaining white chocolate very finely (or even grate it) and set it aside. Place the cream cheese and salt into a large bowl, and beat until smooth. Slowly whisk in the melted white chocolate until combined, and set aside.
Take 2 tbsp of the milk mixture and place it in a small bowl with the cornflour, whisking them together until smooth and set this aside too. Now, place the rest of the milk, along with the cream, sugar, glucose and vanilla into a large saucepan and bring to the boil. Boil for 4 minutes, before removing from the heat and whisking in the cornstarch mixture. Place back on the heat and cook for about one minute or until the mixture thickens slightly.
Slowly incorporate the now thickened milk mixture into the cream cheese and white chocolate whisking periodically to make sure everything is combined and smooth. Now, add a 1/4 tsp of peppermint extract and stir through well. Taste the mixture and see if you want to add more, it should be ever so slightly more peppermint-y than you like, as the taste will dull when it’s cold. I used 3/4 teaspoon and it was perfect. Now, refrigerate overnight to cool the mixture before churning according to the manufacturer’s instructions, adding the finely chopped white chocolate just before the ice cream is done. Freeze and serve!