Chai-no-mite! ice cream

November 4, 2015

Author Notes: This spicy ice cream was inspired by the chai I was taught to make by old employers of mine. This was before chai was everywhere. They made it for their whole family a few times a day. I kept asking them "What is this awesome drink called?" and they always looked at me confused. "It's tea, just tea."creaturecuisine

Makes: 3 quarts


  • 1/4 cup green cardamom pods (cracked)
  • 3 teaspoons fennel seed
  • 5 whole cloves
  • 10 black peppercorns
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons loose black tea
  • 1 1/8 cups sugar
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 5 egg yolks
  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 2 pints heavy cream
  • 3 reusable tea/ herb bags
In This Recipe


  1. Crack the cardamom pods and fill one of the tea bags with them. Put the milk, cream, sugar, salt and cardamom in a saucepan and bring to a simmer.
  2. In teabag number 2, add fennel seed, clove and peppercorn. Crush it up a bit and add to the mixture. Put heat on low, cover and let sit for 10 minutes. Bring back up to a simmer. Remove spices. Whip egg yolks and slowly add your mixture to temper the eggs. Return to pot and set temp to med-high.
  3. Add tea to the last teabag and put in the mixture. Heat until mixture thickens enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon, stirring constantly to prevent scalding.
  4. Take off heat, remove tea and let cool. Transfer to a fridge safe bowl. It's going to develop a skin. You can remove it, but I just whip it back in. Chill in the fridge.
  5. Use your ice cream maker according to directions. It takes my maker about 22 minutes. This makes 2 batches. Serve right away for soft serve, but I think it's better to put in a container and let it firm up in the freezer.
  6. Musical pairings inspired by the time period when I learned to make Chai... Hyperballad ~Bjork, Plowed ~Sponge, Crank ~Catherine Wheel, & Fake Plastic Trees ~Radiohead.

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