It happened to me over Passover. I became an addict. I dream about it and spend waking moments pining for it. I cannot get enough and I crave it. No, not matza; vanilla ice cream. I’m not talking about the kosher for Passover stuff; I am talking about creamy, rich and loaded with vanilla, ice cream.

I made my new obsession for my family with a new table top machine I purchased before the holiday and we loved it. We served the ice cream with berries during the holiday. Last week, I made the frozen confection again and served it with fresh from the oven cookies. We “scarfed” up the treat in two nights. I made my new found guilty pleasure again on Sunday and added homemade caramel corn, white chocolate and dark chocolate. It was spectacular. Ben and Jerry’s, eat your heart out.

I am thinking about making it again. Who know where this will go? A 12-step program? A hush-hush stay at a detox center? Who knows? But with summer just around the corner and so many possible “add-ins” like berries, cherries, and …I am going to stick with it to find out. This is an addiction I can live with.

If you thought homemade ice cream was too hard to make, it’s not. It is simple, quick and unbelievable delicious. Like pretty much everything else, homemade tastes better. I use a simple and inexpensive counter top unit to make my ice cream and it works just fine.

Yields slightly more than 1 quart

1 cup (250ml) whole milk

A pinch of kosher salt

3/4 cup (150g) sugar

1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise

2 cups (500ml) heavy cream

6 large egg yolks

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract (I left this out during Passover)

Suggested garnishes: Crushed cookies, chopped chocolate, mini pretzels, candy, caramel corn, nuts,

1. Heat the milk, salt, and sugar in a saucepan. Scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean into the milk with a paring knife, and then add the bean pod to the milk. 2. In a separate bowl, stir together the egg yolks. Gradually pour some of the milk into the yolks, whisking constantly as you pour. Scrape the warmed yolks and milk back into the saucepan.

3. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly and scraping the bottom with a heat-resistant spatula, until the custard thickens enough to coat the spatula.

4. Strain the custard into the heavy cream. Stir over the ice until cool, add the vanilla extract, then refrigerate to chill thoroughly. Preferably overnight.

5. Remove the vanilla bean and freeze the custard in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

6. Stir in any “add-ins” when the ice cream has finished spinning and while it is still soft.

Chef Laura Frankel is Executive Chef for Spertus Kosher Catering and author of Jewish Cooking for All Seasons, and Jewish Slow Cooker Recipes.





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