This ice cream, provided for us by Chika Tillman of ChikaLicious Dessert Bar in New York City, is made with a classic custard base, which yields a very smooth, creamy dessert. Chika uses pink peppercorns in hers, but we loved it with black pepper too. And if you’re a really big pepper fan, you can leave in the peppercorns, rather than straining them out.
Special equipment: You’ll need an ice cream maker with a 2-quart capacity. We prefer the stand mixer ice cream attachment from KitchenAid.
Game plan: If you’re using an ice cream maker with a freezer insert, make sure it’s completely frozen before beginning the ice cream.
- Yield: 1 1/2 quarts
- Difficulty: Medium
- Total: 1 hr plus steeping and freezing time
- Active: 1 hr
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 2 cups whole milk
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon whole black or pink peppercorns, crushed with the bottom of a heavy pan
- 8 egg yolks
- Heat the heavy cream, milk, sugar, and pepper in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Bring mixture to a simmer, stirring occasionally to dissolve the sugar.
- Remove from heat and let mixture steep for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, place the egg yolks in a medium mixing bowl and beat well with a wire whisk.
- Return the cream mixture to medium heat and bring to a simmer again. Remove from heat. Temper the hot mixture into the eggs by slowly pouring the cream into them in a thin stream, while constantly whisking the eggs with a whisk.
- Strain the egg-and-cream mixture through a fine-mesh strainer back into the saucepan. Return it to the stove and cook over medium-low heat, stirring often with a wooden spoon, until the custard base has thickened enough to coat the back of the spoon.
- Cool the custard in an ice bath until it is completely cold.
- Freeze the custard in an ice cream maker, according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Place in a covered plastic container and store in the freezer overnight.