I love cinnamon and I can’t imagine life in my kitchen without it. It’s as crucial a staple as olive oil or butter as far as I’m concerned. And I’d be very surprised if any of you didn’t have cinnamon in your pantry.
Now you know, typically I’m all about chunks in my ice cream, but when I was thinking about creating this recipe, I couldn’t imagine it to be anything but super smooth and creamy, with each bite uninterrupted by chunks.
Every spoonful is more velvety than the next, with just enough cinnamon to hit every taste bud. You won’t want to stop eating this — and while it’s divine as it, it would also be lovely melting over apple pie, or between two gingerbread cookies.
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 3 cups low-fat milk
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1 small-medium vanilla pod
- 5 egg yolks (from large eggs)
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- Add the cinnamon to a large, dry sauce pot, and place it over medium heat. Let the cinnamon heat until it's very aromatic, about 30 seconds. Turn off the heat.
- Pour the milk and cream over the cinnamon and use a whisk to blend.
- Use a paring knife to slice open the vanilla bean vertically. Then with the back of the knife, scrape the vanilla beans into the pot, and add the emptied pod as well. Turn the heat back to medium and scald this mixture. Tiny bubbles will appear on the edges of the pot and it should be very hot, but not boiling. Remove the pot from the heat and let it cool to room temperature, about 1½ hours.
- In a large mixing bowl, use an electric mixer to whip the egg yolks with the sugar. Mix until it's thick and pale yellow. When you drizzle it with a spoon, it should rest for a second or two before sinking back into the rest of the mixture -- this is called the "ribbon stage."
- Strain the milk mixture and then add about half of it to the bowl, and whisk to blend. Then add the rest and blend again.
- Pour this back into the pot and over medium-low heat, stirring almost constantly with a wooden spoon, cook until it becomes a beautiful custard, 10 to 15 minutes. The moment you see that's it's thickened, remove the pot from the heat, pour it into a large mixing bowl and let it cool completely -- at least 2 hours and ideally overnight. (If cooling overnight, let it come to room temperature, cover it tightly with plastic wrap, and refrigerate.)
- Transfer to an ice-cream maker, and freeze according to the machine instructions.