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I love gingerbread. Gingerbread cookies, gingerbread lattes, gingerbread everything – love it! I’ve been meaning to try to make gingerbread ice cream since around Christmas, but I kept putting it off and forgetting and then I decided to paint my kitchen cabinets and do a lot of other major things around the house. So finally this weekend I decided to make it.
It turned out much better than I thought it would! I thought this would be one of those recipes I’d be posting and tagging with “disaster!” There are a few things I would change next time around. I would reduce the amount of sugar, use less molasses, and a little bit more ginger. But it is really good, and I’ll be making another batch with those things adjusted. (Update: The recipe in this post has been adjusted for the things I just mentioned.)
Ice Cream Base
2 cups heavy cream
1 cup milk (2% or whole)
6 egg yolks
½ cup sugar
¼ tsp kosher salt
Gingerbread Flavoring Mixture
½ cup molasses
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp allspice
¼ tsp nutmeg
½ tsp ginger
Whisk together molasses, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, and ginger and set aside.
Heat heavy cream and milk in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring often, until it’s very hot – but do not let it boil. While it’s heating, whisk (or beat using stand mixer with wire whip attachment) the egg yolks and sugar together.
Add ¼ cup of the milk and cream mixture to the egg mixture gradually, whisking constantly. Continuing to whisk, gradually add the remaining milk and cream mixture. (Adding gradually and whisking constantly are really important here. Otherwise you’ll end up with yucky cooked eggs instead of an ice cream base.)
Return the mixture to the saucepan and heat over medium-low heat and cook until it reaches 170°. At this point, the mixture should have thickened and should be able to coat the back of a wooden spoon.
Remove the ice cream base from the heat and strain through a mesh strainer. Whisk in the molasses mixture. Cover and let it come to room temperature, then place in the refrigerator and chill for 8+ hours.
Transfer the ice cream to containers and freeze for 4+ hours before serving.