Freeze

Corn Ice Cream

June 27, 2019
Photo by Bobbi Lin
Author Notes

Creamed corn is a classic side dish for good reason: Cream and corn love each other. This recipe plays up that same combo, but in a completely different context—ice cream. It’s as sweet from sugar as it is from the corn itself, with a milky-buttery richness. Buttermilk adds tang (just like in cornbread), while vanilla keeps the vibe desserty. This is great plain, scooped on top of any fruit pie (especially blueberry), or served in a bowl with lots of caramel sauce on top. Assuming this makes you a vegetable ice cream convert (it will!), try these flavors next: beet and carrot. —Emma Laperruque

  • Prep time 8 hours
  • Cook time 20 minutes
  • Makes about 5 cups
Ingredients
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 ears corn
  • 6 large egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup well-shaken buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons cider vinegar
In This Recipe
Directions
  1. Plan ahead: Make sure the bowl of your ice cream machine is in the freezer for at least 24 hours before you churn.
  2. Combine the cream, milk, sugar, and salt in a saucepan and set over medium-low heat. Meanwhile, cut the kernels off the cobs of corn, then break each naked cob in half. Add the kernels and cobs to the cream mixture. Bring to a boil, then turn off the heat, cover, and let steep for an hour.
  3. Remove and discard the cobs. Add the mixture to a blender. Remove the keyhole from the lid. After you close the lid of the blender, top firmly with a kitchen towel that you don’t mind getting dirty. Blend on high speed until the mixture is as smooth as possible.
  4. Return this to the saucepan, again over medium-low heat. Add the yolks to a heatproof bowl and whisk a bit. Add a splash of the hot corn mixture and whisk. Add another splash and whisk. Repeat this until you’ve added about 2/3 of the liquid. Now pour this back in the saucepan. Continue cooking—stirring slowly but constantly—until it thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon.
  5. Pour through a fine-mesh sieve into a heatproof bowl. Stir in the buttermilk and vanilla. Chill completely in the fridge.
  6. Just before churning, add the cider vinegar and adjust that, the vanilla, and salt to taste. Churn in an ice cream machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions, then freeze for a few hours before serving.

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Emma is a writer and recipe developer at Food52. Before this, she worked a lot of odd jobs, all at the same time. Think: stir-frying noodles "on the fly," baking dozens of pastries at 3 a.m., reviewing restaurants, and writing stories about everything from how to use leftover mashed potatoes to the history of pies in North Carolina. Now, she lives in Maplewood, New Jersey with her husband and their cat, Butter.