Here is a recipe to start your summer off right! Toasted coconut ice cream mixed with chocolate covered almonds – the ice cream version of an Almond Joy candy bar! But I may say this is even better since I used bittersweet chocolate to coat the almonds (a la Mounds bars and not Almond Joy). The smell of the ice cream base with the infused toasted coconut was so amazing – I was ready to drink it. But I did resist and churned it – but it did not last long in our freezer. Enjoy!
- 1 1/3 cup shredded coconut, unsweetened
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 3/4 cup sugar
- pinch of salt
- 1 vanilla bean, split in half lengthwise
- 5 large egg yolks
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 4 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped
- 1 cup unsalted dry roasted almonds
1. Preheat the oven to 350. Spread the coconut on a baking sheet and toast for 6-10 minutes, stirring occasionally to toast it evenly. Remove from the oven when it’s fragrant and golden brown.
2. In a medium saucepan, warm 1 cup of the milk, the cream, sugar, salt, and 1 cup of the toasted coconut (reserve the rest of the coconut for folding in later).
3. Using a paring knife, scrape all the vanilla seeds into the warm milk, then add the pod as well. Cover, remove from the heat, and let steep at room temperature for 1 hour.
4. Rewarm the coconut-infused mixture. Set a mesh strainer over another medium saucepan and strain the coconut-infused liquid through the strainer into the saucepan. Press down on the coconut very firmly with a flexible rubber spatula to extract as much of the flavor from it as possible. Remove the vanilla bean halves and discard the coconut.
5. Pour the remaining 1 cup of milk into a large bowl and set the mesh strainer on top.
6. In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks. Slowly pour the warm coconut-infused mixture into the egg yolks, whisking constantly, then scrape the warmed egg yolks back into the saucepan.
7. Stir the mixture constantly over medium heat with a heatproof spatula, scraping the bottom as you stir, until the mixture thickens and coats the back of a spatula it should be 170-175 °F.
8. Pour the custard through the strainer and stir it into the cream. Mix in the vanilla extract and stir over an ice bath until cool. Chill the mixture thoroughly in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight.
9. While your custard is cooling, make the chocolate covered almonds. Stretch a piece of plastic wrap over a plate. Melt the chocolate over a double boiler or in the microwave. Stir until smooth. Stir in the almonds, coating them with the chocolate. Spread the mixture onto the lined plate and chill.
10. Freeze the ice cream base in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. While your ice cream is churning, chop the chocolate covered almonds into bite sized pieces. Fold the reserved toasted coconut and the almonds into the frozen ice cream, as you’re removing it from the machine.