It's been just over a month since my husband got me an ice cream maker for my birthday. Quite frankly I'm surprised the motor hasn't given out (yes, I've been making a lot of ice cream). In addition to the ice cream maker, I also received two terrific cookbooks: Molly Moon' s Homemade Ice Cream and People's Pops: 55 Recipes for Ice Pops, Shave Ice, and Boozy Pops from Brooklyn's Coolest Pop Shop. I decided to start with the Molly Moon's book.
I first heard of Molly Moon's about 4 1/2 years ago. I was 6 months pregnant with my first son Otis and we were trying to figure out whether or not we should relocated to Seattle. Our apartment in the Prospect Heights section of Brooklyn was feeling pretty crowded and it was going to seem even smaller once the baby arrived. We were also starting to sour on the city, despite having most of our family and closest friends around. I always loved the Pacific Northwest, so we booked a flight and flew to Seattle to check things out.
Seattle had a lot of things going for it: employment prospects were better for me because I was a member of the Washington Bar. And the overall cost of living, while not cheap, was more affordable than NYC. The food scene (amazing), hiking options (tons), and the politically active citizenry of Seattle made us think it would be a good place to live.
Once we got there we ate and ate and ate. We went to Macrina Bakery for brunch, shopped at the Pikes Place Market, and stumbled upon a cheese festival that happened to be taking place while we were in town. We ate tons of pho, dined at Tilth (oh lord that place is good)and walked around Gasworks Park. We also got tickets to see the Mariners clobber the Red Socks at Safeco field. (I was rooting for the Mariners because I was in their stadium. Of course I'm also a New Yorker and a Yankee fan-- so I don't have much love for the Boston Red Sox!)
We took a little side trip to Vancouver, which was fabulous (more great food and lots of great walks). Upon our return to Seattle we decided to get some ice cream. The spot? Molly Moon's. The line? Around the block. I heard their salted caramel flavor was incredibly popular and worth the wait. It was to-die-for. We got a pint.
Anyway here we are, 5 years later. Lots of things have changed since that trip to Seattle. We are living in Denver, not Seattle, and our family now has 5 happy members (I'm including our trusted Rottweiler in this count). One thing that hasn't changed much is my love of ice cream...especially Molly Moon's.
Salted Caramel was the first recipe I tried. I paired it with a warm Ghirardelli brownie (above) and it was fantastic. Next up was Mexican Chocolate (nice heat from Vietnamese, a.k.a Saigon, Cinnamon) and blood orange sorbet (seasonal and refreshing).
I did my happy-dance the minute my husband returned from the grocery store. I could see those boxes through the shopping bag. Know which boxes I mean? Hmmmm? Yes? The little green boxes that are hard to find and sold by Girl Scouts around the nation? Thin mints! Yes, thin mints! THIN MINTS!
People, it's very hard not to fall in love with this one. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did. A special thank you goes out to the awesome people at Molly Moon's who let me publish their recipe.
"Scout" Mint Ice Cream (Courtesy of Molly Moon's Homemade Ice Cream, printed with permission)
Makes 1- 1 1/2 Quarts
1 cup whole milk
2 cups heavy cream
3/4 cup sugar
Pinch of kosher salt
2 teaspoons peppermint extract
1 1/2 cups crushed Thin Mint Girl Scout cookies (about 15 cookies)
Note: The cookies can be crushed into pieces as big or as small as you want them to be in your ice cream. We shoot for pea-size pieces and leave a cookie or two mostly intact- because who doesn't love finding a big cookie in their ice cream?
Put the milk, cream, sugar, and salt into a small, heavy-bottomed saucepan. Cook over medium heat, whisking occasionally to dissolve the sugar. Before the mixture has come to a boil, remove from the heat. Pour the mixture into a shallow pan or bowl and place in the refrigerator to chill thoroughly, 1 to 2 hours.
When the mixture is cold, stir in the peppermint extract. Pour it into an ice cream maker and process according to the manufacturer's instructions(mine takes 20-25 minutes from start to finish once the power is turned on and the bowl starts turning). During the last few minutes of processing, add the cookies. Using a rubber spatula, transfer the ice cream to an airtight glass or plastic freezer container. Cover tightly and freeze until the ice cream is firm, at least 4 hours.
Note: You have to freeze the bowl that comes with the ice cream maker for 24 hours prior to use, so don't forget to do this in advance!