This is adult ice cream, my friends. It’s full of rich dark chocolate, tons of cocoa powder and a little bit of mint liqueur just to make sure you’re all paying attention. If there’s one thing I’ve learned over my adult years, it’s that booze makes everything better. Case in point: my beer-braised Mexican pulled pork, this delicious chocolate stout cake with pear cider frosting, or this Nutella and rum cake. Something about the addition of alcohol just seems to bring out the best in these dishes, adding subtle layers of flavor, and I’m not one to argue with that.
This particular ice cream took FOREVER to firm up. After 40 minutes in my ice cream maker it was still at milkshake consistency. I gave up, put it in the freezer and impatiently awaited the transformation. Of course, I gave in about an hour later and ate it melty (which I like anyway!), but after about 3-4 hours it finally became nice, firm, delicious ice cream. We are huge mint fans, but decided that the mint liqueur was actually enough; the Andes mint chocolate chips that we mixed in at the last minute just seemed like overkill. The ice cream itself was perfect and just minty enough, without it overpowering the strong chocolate flavors.
Dark chocolate mint ice cream
Chocolate ice cream base from the Faux Martha, adapted only for the types of cream I can find in France!
2 C half & half (or in my case, 1 C milk mixed with 1 C semi-heavy cream)
1 1/2 C milk
1 C heavy cream
1 C + 2 T sugar
Dash of sea salt
1/2 C cocoa powder
About 3/4 C dark chocolate, roughly chopped
4 egg yolks
1 1/2 t vanilla extract
3-4 T mint liqueur
1/4 C mint chocolate chips (optional)
Begin by mixing the half and half, milk, cream, sea salt and 1 C sugar in a large saucepan over medium high heat. Whisk the mixture together to help dissolve the sugar.
While waiting for the milk mixture to begin to simmer, whisk your egg yolks and remaining 2 T sugar in a large bowl until frothy and pale yellow.
Once the milk mixture reaches a simmer, stir in the cocoa powder and chocolate pieces and continue to heat until you’re back to a simmer. Then, take 1/2 C of the simmering mixture and slowly and steadily whisk it into the egg mixture. I recommend placing a heavy saucepan on your countertop and placing a kitchen towel inside it. Then place your bowl containing egg yolks on top of the saucepan; this should help to keep it from moving as you’ll be whisking and pouring at the same time and not able to hold it steady. Pour in the first 1/2 C of egg yolks and sugar, whisking constantly. Add a second dose, continuing to whisk. Your eggs are now tempered! Add this mixture back to the original saucepan and continue to cook, whisking often if not constantly, for about 6-8 minutes more, until the mixture is thick and coats the back of a spatula. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla extract, then let cool to room temperature. Once the mixture has cooled, stir in the mint liqueur before refrigerating for 2-3 hours. Once the mixture is completely cooled, follow your ice cream maker’s instructions.
You can add the mint chocolate chips once the ice cream is mostly set and before putting it in the freezer. I ran my ice cream maker for about 40 minutes and needed 3-4 hours more in the freezer before I actually got a real ice cream texture.