Vanilla Bean Love

Editor’s Note: Yes, this is the second frozen dessert recipe in a row. Let’s just say that it’s all I’ve had time for lately. We’ll be back with some variety soon enough. 

Vanilla. It’s just so, well, vanilla. I’m definitely one of those people who will give you the side-eye if we’re ordering ice cream and you walk away with a scoop of vanilla in a bowl. Give me chocolate, peanut butter cup, moose tracks, cherry, rocky road… the list goes on and on. In my mind, the only reason to choose vanilla ice cream is when you’re serving pie a la mode.

Andy, on the other hand, would choose vanilla bean every day, I think. (Although, he *might* occasionally switch that up for mint chocolate chip.) If I say that I want to make ice cream, he immediately responds with “Vanilla bean?!?!” You should see the look on his face when I tell him, “No, I’m making ice cream with basil.” Ha!

My chocolate preferences aside, this IS the ice cream I make the most. Not only because Andy loves it, but also because it’s simple, and I almost always have all of the ingredients on hand. Oh, and the fact that it’s the perfect accompaniment to a slice of pie doesn’t hurt either. 😀

I’ll be the first to admit that this isn’t the prettiest picture… it was all I could do to scrape together enough ice cream to fill the bowl! This stuff never lasts long around here.

Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

1 cup of whole milk
3/4 cup sugar
2 cups heavy cream, divided
pinch of salt
1 vanilla bean
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a medium saucepan, combine the sugar, salt and one cup of cream. Split the vanilla bean lengthwise and scrape the seeds into the cream mixture. Add the vanilla bean pod to the mixture and heat over medium, stirring to help dissolve the sugar. (If desired, you can allow this mixture to steep, off the heat, for 30-60 minutes – totally optional.) 

Remove pan from heat and stir in the milk, remaining cream and vanilla extract. Chill thoroughly (I usually let it sit overnight.) and remove the vanilla bean pod before churning in an ice cream maker. Transfer to a freezer-safe container and freeze until firm.

From Annie’s Eats, who barely adapted it from David Lebovitz’s “The Perfect Scoop”

Click here for a printable version.


18 thoughts on “Vanilla Bean Love

  1. Beth, this is my favorite that you make!! Although it is simple, it is just so, so good. And comfortable. A great stand-by in my book. Maybe that means I am boring? 🙂

    On another note, I love your writing!

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