This Champagne Ice Cream Recipe Will Be the Star of Your Holiday Season
Boozy ice cream isn't just reserved for warmer months. To ring in the New Year, churn up this dazzling ice cream that stars sparkling wine. Because getting the right ratio of alcohol to ice cream can be tricky, we turned to the ultimate ice cream master, Jeni Britton Bauer of Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams, and adapted a recipe from her foolproof cookbook Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams at Home. Unlike most ice cream recipes out there, this one doesn't call for any egg. It receives its ultra thick, almost chewy texture due to an unexpected ingredient: cream cheese. While this ice cream doesn't have enough sparkling wine to leave you buzzed, it does have the fantastic flavor of whatever you put in it. Serve it alongside a demi-sec Champagne (AKA a sweeter sparkling wine) to complete the celebration. Cheers!
Ingredients: 2 2/3 cups whole milk 1 Tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons cornstarch 2 ounces (4 Tablespoons) cream cheese, softened 1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt 1 1/2 cups heavy cream 3/4 cup sugar 1/4 cup light corn syrup 1/3 cup sparkling wine glitter star sprinkles, optional gold star sparklers, optional
Mix about two tablespoons of the milk with the one tablespoon plus two teaspoons of cornstarch in a small bowl to make a smooth slurry.
Whisk the two ounces (four tablespoons) of cream cheese and 1/8 teaspoon of salt in a medium bowl until smooth. Fill a large bowl with ice and water.
Combine the remaining milk (a little less than 2 2/3 cups), the 1 1/2 cups of cream, 3/4 cup of sugar, and 1/4 cup of corn syrup in a 4-quart saucepan. Bring to a rolling boil over medium-high heat and boil for four minutes. Note: The timing is super important! Set a timer and keep a watchful eye. Also, put this mixture in a larger pot than you think is needed so it doesn't boil over.
Gradually whisk in the cornstarch slurry. Bring back to a boil over medium-high heat and cook, stirring with a heat-proof spatula until slightly thickened, about one minute. Remove from heat.
Gradually whisk the hot milk mixture into the cream cheese until smooth.
Add the 1/3 cup of sparkling wine and blend well.
Pour the mixture into a one-gallon Ziploc freezer bag. Pro Tip: Fold the freezer bag back over a large vase, as pictured. This makes for a mess-free pour.
Submerge sealed bag in the ice bath. Let stand, adding more ice as necessary until cold, about 30 minutes. Don't skimp on this step! Make sure the mixture is ice-cold before you proceed to the next step. Lukewarm or room temperature will result in ice cream that doesn't freeze properly.
Pour the ice cream base into the frozen canister. Be sure to freeze the canister several days before you attempt to make the ice cream.
Spin until thick and creamy, about 25-30 minutes.
Pack the ice cream into a storage container, press a sheet of parchment directly against the surface, and seal with an airtight lid. Freeze in the coldest part of your freezer until firm, at least four hours. Once ice cream pulls away from the sides of the canister, it's ready to be packed.
When ready to serve, remove the ice cream from freezer and let stand for a few minutes before scooping into Champagne coupe glasses and topping with star-shaped sprinkles. Add some extra dazzle by igniting a sparkler candle on top of the scoops. Happy New Year, indeed!
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(Photos via Kurt Andre)