Fresh mint and high-quality chocolate give this ice cream amazing flavor. The length of time that the mint leaves are left in the milk will determine the intensity of the mint taste. To melt chocolate, put chopped chocolate in a heatproof bowl and place over (but not touching) barely simmering water in a saucepan. Heat, stirring occasionally with a silicone spatula, until melted and smooth. Take care not to get any water into the chocolate, which can cause it to seize up.
Mint Chip Ice Cream
1 1/2 cups (12 fl. oz./375 ml) whole milk
1 1/2 cups (12 fl. oz./375 ml) heavy cream
2/3 cup (5 oz./150 g) sugar
1 cup (1 oz./30 g) fresh mint leaves, from about 1 bunch
4 egg yolks
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
4 oz. (125 g) semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped, melted and cooled to room temperature
2 tsp. canola oil
In a saucepan, combine the milk, 1 cup (8 fl. oz./250 ml) of the cream, 1/3 cup (2 1/2 oz./75 g) of the sugar and the mint leaves. Place over medium heat and cook, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon, until bubbles form around the edges and the sugar dissolves, 4 to 5 minutes. Do not allow to come to a boil. Remove from the heat and let stand for 15 to 20 minutes to steep. In a bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, the remaining 1/3 cup (2 1/2 oz./75 g) sugar and the remaining 1/2 cup (4 fl. oz./125 ml) cream until well blended.
Return the saucepan to medium heat and cook, stirring frequently, until bubbles form around the edges, 2 to 4 minutes. Remove from the heat. Whisk the egg yolk mixture while slowly pouring in the hot milk mixture. When almost all of the hot liquid has been added, slowly pour the warmed yolk mixture back into the saucepan, still whisking. Place the saucepan over medium heat and cook, stirring constantly, until the custard is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, 4 to 5 minutes. Do not boil.
Pour the hot custard through a sieve into a clean bowl, gently pressing the liquid through the sieve and leaving any grainy solids in the sieve. Stir in the vanilla until blended.
Nestle the bowl with the custard in a larger one filled halfway with ice and water and let cool for 30 to 45 minutes. Place a piece of plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the custard and on top of the bowl.
Refrigerate for 3 to 24 hours.
Prepare an ice cream maker with at least a 1-qt (1-l) capacity according to the manufacturer’s directions. Pour the custard into the ice cream maker and churn until the custard reaches the consistency of thick whipped cream.
Stir the oil into the cooled, melted chocolate. During the last 1 to 2 minutes of churning, drizzle the chocolate mixture into the ice cream maker and continue to churn until small slivers of chocolate form. Transfer to a plastic freezer container, cover tightly and freeze until firm, at least 3 hours or up to 3 days. Makes about 1 quart (1 l); serves 6.
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