Memorial Day weekend is the official start to summer (or is it unofficial since summer “officially” starts on June 21st? Hmph…), and nothing says summer quite like fresh homemade ice cream! I got the party started a couple of weeks ago by sharing some of my favorite ice cream recipes with you, and now I have a brand new one to add to the collection. Mint chocolate chip is one of those ice cream flavors that I sometimes forget exists, yet every time I eat it I absolutely adore it. And now that I have a homemade version, I’ll be making it even more! This is very similar to a basic vanilla, except that you don’t use a vanilla bean, and you add mint extract (plus a few drops of green food coloring). The smooth, creamy ice cream has a crisp, bright flavor that makes me want to toss off my shoes and run through a sprinkler.
You can use any type of chocolate chip that you’d like for this (or even chop up some chocolate), but I prefer the contrast that dark chocolate provides. Very reminiscent of Andes mints or even peppermint patties. Remember the commercials from a few years ago when someone bit into a York peppermint patty they were teleported to a ski slope or something of the sort? That’s how this ice cream makes me feel – fresh and bright. I’m not quite ready to ski, so bring on summer!
1. Warm 1 cup of the heavy cream, whole milk, granulated sugar and pinch of salt in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar dissolves.
2. Pour the remaining 1 cup of heavy cream into a large bowl and set a mesh strainer on top. In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks. Slowly pour the warm mixture into the egg yolks, whisking constantly, then scrape the warmed egg yolks back into the saucepan.
3. Stir the mixture constantly over medium heat with a heatproof spatula, scraping the bottom as you stir, until the mixture thickens and coats the spatula (if using a thermometer, it should be right around 170 degrees F). Pour the custard through the strainer and stir it into the cream. Add the vanilla and mint extracts and the food coloring (if using), and stir until cool over an ice bath.
4. Chill the mixture thoroughly in the refrigerator (preferably overnight). Churn according to your ice cream maker's directions, adding the chocolate chips during the last 5 minutes of churning.