Sunday, June 8, 2008

Decadency on a spoon - Chocolate Ice Cream Melts the Palette

Decadent. Sinful. And oh! so delicious. Chocolate ice cream remains a popular ice cream treat.

Forget the local dairy king imposters known as soft serve. Dish up the good stuff: the homemade indulgence that grandma and grandpa used to make.

Ice cream dates back to 4th century B.C., when Nero demanded snow and ice be brought down from the mountains. Then, the ice was mixed with fruit, creating the first-known example of ice cream.

The Tang Dynasty (AD 618 - 697) were the first to mix ice and milk products to form the creamy treat. Eventually, traders tales of the frozen cream weaved their way back to Europe, where experimentation led to the development of sherbets, ices, and milk ices.

Americans enjoyed the dessert, too. In 1782, the French envoy honored the new American republic and served the concoction to the assembly. Dolly Madison dished it in the White House.

The first mention of chocolate ice cream was in a cookbook by Jean-Pierre Buc'hoz from 1787, but it is possible that earlier experiments in the kitchen produced the chocolaty goodness first.

Try this recipe today, in honor of National Chocolate Ice Cream Day.

  • 4 oz. quality unsweetened chocolate
  • 1 1/4 C. milk
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 C. sugar
  • 1 C. cream
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 t. vanilla
  • 1/2 C. cold milk

Melt chocolate over low heat. At the same time, heat milk over low heat in a small saucepan. Gradually stir milk into melted chocolate. It is important to slowly add the milk; otherwise, the chocolate will clump and become hard. Heat while stirring until mixture reaches a smooth consistency. The mixture will be thick.

Beat eggs with sugar. Stir in the hot chocolate and milk mixture, stirring constantly. Add cream, salt, vanilla, and 1/2 C. cold milk. Allow mix to cool. Freeze in an ice cream freezer.

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