This past Christmas was quieter than usual as my husband and I celebrated with just the two of us here in our tiny apartment. Not only was it the first time that we weren’t with family for the holidays, but also it was our first married Christmas (eeep!) and our first white Christmas. Well technically it was a white Christmas as there was snow on the ground outside, but the rainstorm that came through that day tried hard to melt all of the snow! We cuddled together with our peppermint hot chocolates, freshly made monkey bread, and watched Home Alone as we listened to the rainfall tap against the windows. I flipped through one of the gifts my mother had gifted me, the Joy of Cooking, eager to make one of the recipes. I decided to adapt her French Vanilla Ice Cream recipe to accommodate some of the Christmas candy that came in our stockings. This peanut butter Reese’s ice cream is smooth, creamy, and extra peanut buttery for all you peanut butter lovers out there like me. If you are looking to cut back on calories after this holiday season, but still aren’t ready to completely cut out sweets (me! me! me!), then substitute the whole milk for lower fat milk, and the heavy cream for half & half. With less fat the ice cream will not be as creamy and rich, but it will still taste delicious!
PEANUT BUTTER REESE'S ICE CREAM
1. Combine in a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar:
1 cup whole milk
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1/8 teaspoon salt
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together until light in color:
3 egg yolks
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
3. Temper the eggs by slowly stirring in ½ of the hot milk mixture into the egg/sugar mixture, whisking continuously. Once the bowl is warm to the touch, pour the mixture back into the hot milk mixture.
4. Reduce heat to low, and continue whisking mixture continuously until the custard thickens to the point that it coats the back of a wooden spoon. Do not let the mixture boil.
5. Transfer the mixture to a bowl. Cover with plastic wrap, allowing the wrap to directly touch the custard surface. Refrigerate for 2-3 hours.
6. Stir in:
2 cups heavy cream
1 Tablespoon vanilla
7. Pour mixture into your frozen ice cream maker bowl, and churn ice cream per the manufacturer’s instructions.
8. Transfer to an ice cream storage tub or an airtight container. Stir in:
4 King sized Reese’s cups, crushed
9. Cover, and freeze to reach desired consistency. Ideally place the container in the back of the freezer so it will be less subjected to the changing temperatures of the front of the freezer from opening and closing the freezer door.