Cheesecake Ice Cream

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 Cheesecake Ice Cream- this stuff is great! The addition of the cream cheese to the ice cream makes it so creamy and delicious! I adore cheesecake but I never feel like running my oven for as long as it takes to bake one in the heat of summer. So this ice cream has been my solution. I tried several recipes out then experimented quite a bit. This is the final result of many, many test batches of cheesecake ice cream- the kids and hubby sure didn’t complain about this 🙂 . I settled on a french style ice cream with a custard base because I just prefer the richness and creaminess of this type of ice cream. I also am pretty much a purist when it comes to cheesecake and often just eat it plain. That’s why I didn’t do any add ins like strawberries or blueberries. But feel free to throw some berries in too or it’s great served with a fresh berry sauce over top. I did however miss the flavor of the graham cracker crust and thought it made the ice cream to layer graham cracker crust crumbs in. 

cheesecakeic

The recipe may look complicated but it’s really pretty simple- I usually make a custard base in less than 10 minutes the night before I want to make ice cream. The big thing is just to temper the eggs so you don’t have scrambled eggs. I also do not like things incredibly sweet and usually make this with 3/4 cup of sugar. If you like things a bit sweeter or are not using the graham cracker crumbs then use 1 cup of sugar. This recipe yields roughly 1 and 1/2 quarts. I do freeze it in my 1 and 1/2 quart Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker (which by the way I have had for years and love). I have only had this recipe overflow just a bit once but I think I beat too much air into the mixture prior to freezing it.  So you should be fine freezing it all at once if you have a 1 and 1/2 quart ice cream maker- just follow your manufacture’s instructions. Or just freeze part of the mixture and store the remainder of the mixture in the fridge until ready to freeze in the ice cream maker. 

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Cheesecake Ice Cream
Yields a generous 1 and 1/2 quarts. Note: you will most likely not need all the graham cracker crumbs, feel free to half the crumb recipe if desired. ***Please note this is gluten free without the graham cracker crumbs unless you use gluten free graham crackers.
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Ingredients
  1. 1 cup whole milk
  2. 1 1/2 cups heavy cream, divided
  3. 1 cup granulated sugar **see note
  4. 4 large egg yolks
  5. 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  6. 12 oz cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  7. 2 tsp of grated lemon zest
  8. 1 Tbsp of lemon juice
For the graham cracker crust mix in
  1. 1 cup finely ground graham cracker crumbs (about 8 or 9 Graham crackers)
  2. 2 Tbsp of granulated sugar
  3. 5 Tbsp of melted butter
To make the custard base
  1. Make an ice bath set up by placing a strainer over a medium bowl and setting this bowl in a larger bowl containing ice water. You just need a cup or two of ice in enough water to just barely float the ice. Have this near your stove to quickly strain and cool the custard mixture. Pour 1 cup of the heavy cream into the medium bowl of your ice bath (this will help cool the custard quicker when it is poured in to the cold cream)
  2. Heat the milk, the remaining 1/2 cup of the cream, and sugar in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally to dissolve sugar, until steam appears and the milk is warm (about 175 degrees), about 5 minutes.
  3. While milk mixture is heating, whisk the egg yolks in a large glass measuring cup or a bowl until smooth and pale yellow, about 30 seconds. Slowly add half the warm milk mixture into the beaten yolks while whisking quickly- you don't want scrambled eggs. Whisk this milk and egg yolk mixture back into the warm milk in the saucepan; place the saucepan over medium heat and cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon or heat proof spatula, until steam appears, foam subsides, and the mixture is slightly thickened (an instant-read thermometer will read about 180 degrees) The mixture will coat the back of the spoon and if you run your finger across the coating it will leave a trail that stays. Be careful not to boil the mixture as the eggs will curdle.
  4. Immediately pour the custard through the strainer into the bowl set in the ice bath. Allow to cool to room temperature, stirring it occasionally . Stir in vanilla extract. Cover and refrigerate at least 8 hours or overnight.
For graham cracker mix in
  1. Mix together the graham cracker crumbs and sugar. Add in melted butter and mix with a fork until crumbs are uniformly coated. Press into a pie plate and bake in a preheated 350 degree oven until lightly browned and fragrant, about 10 to 13 minutes. Allow to cool completely then break up into crumbs and pieces. Set aside.
To Make Ice Cream
  1. Beat together softened cream cheese, lemon zest and lemon juice until smooth and combined. Gradually beat in cooled custard mixture and mix until uniform and combined.
  2. Freeze in ice cream maker according to manufacturer's instructions.
  3. Layer in container with graham cracker crumbs. I like to do 2 or 3 layers of graham cracker crumbs between layers of ice cream (you most likely will not use all the crumbs). You could also reserve the crumbs and use as topping instead.
  4. Freeze the ice cream a couple of hours or until firm. If it gets too firm, allow to sit at room temperature for about 10 minutes before serving.
Notes
  1. **I do not like ice cream overly sweet so I often cut the sugar to 3/4 cup and think this is perfect sweetness in combo with the graham cracker crumbs. If you like things a bit sweeter or are not using graham cracker crumb use up to the 1 cup of sugar.
Amy Kay's Kitchen http://www.amykayskitchen.com/

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