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Vanilla Ice Cream With Maker's Mark (Bourbon)

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“Another wonderful Michael Ruhlman ("Ratio") recipe, this one for frozen custard laced with the good stuff. Use any add-ins you like, such as toasted nuts, cherries, ginger, or orange zest. Use any milk or cream you like, but whole milk and heavier creams will taste the best, as this is not a low-fat dessert!”
3 1/2 cups

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 1 12 cups milk
  • 1 12 cups cream
  • 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
  • 34 cup sugar
  • 6 ounces egg yolks (9 large egg yolks)
  • 2 -4 tablespoons Bourbon, to taste (Maker's Mark)


  1. Combine the milk, cream, and vanilla bean in a saucepan and bring to a simmer. Remove the pan from the heat and let the bean steep for 15 minutes, then remove it and use a paring knife to scrap the seeds from the inside of the pod into the milk and cream mixture. Discard the pod.
  2. Combine the sugar and yolks and whisk vigorously for 30 seconds or so.
  3. Fill a large bowl with a 50/50 mixture of ice and water, then place a second bowl into the ice bath. Set a fine-mesh strainer into the inner bowl.
  4. Over medium heat, bring the milk and cream mixture just to a simmer, then pour it slowly into the yolks while whisking continuously.
  5. Pour the mixture back into the pan and continue whisking over medium heat until the mixture is slightly thick, or nappe (it should be pourable, but it should be thick enough on a spoon dipped into it that you can draw a line through the mixture that clings to the spoon). This will take 2 to 4 minutes.
  6. Pour the mixture through the strainer into the bowl that is resting in the ice water bath. Stir the custard sauce with a rubber spatula until it is cold. Add the bourbon to taste. Cover and refrigerate it until it is thoroughly chilled, preferably overnight (the colder, the better).
  7. Freeze according to your machine's instructions.

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