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Author Notes: I recently ordered Brown Sugar and Clove Ice Cream at a local restaurant with some friends. We LOVED it, so I tried to duplicate it at home. The first time I made it, it was good, but didn't have a strong enough brown sugar flavor for me. So the second time I made it, I caramelized the brown sugar in a dry pan first to really bring up the flavor. But since I was pairing this with some individual small gingerbread cakes, I wanted to lighted it up just a bit with pear. When I served this ice cream with the little gingerbread cakes at a party last weekend, it was a huge hit! Note: if you want this to be creamier, use 3 cups of heavy cream instead of 2 cups cream and 1 cup of whole milk. If you want the brown sugar flavor to be a little more in the background, just add the brown sugar to the hot cream mixture to melt it before adding the cream mixture to the eggs instead of caramelizing the sugar. —TheWimpyVegetarian
Makes about a quart
- 2 1/2 pounds pears (about 3), peeled, cored and thinly sliced (I used Comice Pears)
- 1 cup Pear Nectar (you can use pear juice if you can't find pear nectar)
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- pinches salt
- 3/4 cup brown sugar (about 6.5 oz)
- 2 cups heavy cream, divided
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 vanilla bean, split
- 1 cup whole milk
- 6 large egg yolks
- Combine the pears, pear nectar, lemon juice and salt to a simmer in a heavy pot over medium heat. Simmer for 30 seconds and remove from the heat. Pour into a food processor and process until completely smooth. Chill.
- Place the brown sugar in a dry heavy pot over medium high heat so that it completely covers the bottom of the pot. Watch carefully for the sugar to begin to melt, about 2 minutes. Once you can see it melting in several places, start to stir with a wooden spoon. Keep stirring until it is all melted and begins to darken. Once it's darkened several shades (depending on how strong you want the brown sugar flavor), remove from the heat and pour in 1 cup of cream. The sugar will immediately seize. Stir for about 5 minutes to incorporate most of the brown sugar into the cream and return to medium heat. Contine stirring to completely integrate the sugar into the cream. Add the rest of the cream, milk, vanilla bean, and clove powder and heat until the mixture begins to simmer. Remove from the heat.
- Mix the yolks in a standing mixer using a whisk attachment until a light creamy yellow. Gradually add 70% of the hot cream mixture to the yolks while whisking on a medium low speed. The whisking helps cool the egg mixture while incorporating the cream. Once 70% of the hot cream mixture is added, pour the egg mixture back into the pot with the rest of the cream and return to medium heat. Stir the custard constantly until the back of the spoon is coated and you can easily see a line when you draw your finger through it on the spoon.
- Chill for several hours or overnight. Process in an ice cream maker according to manufacturers recommendations.