Monday, September 6, 2010

Dense, Dark Chocolate Ice Cream

Mmmm... chocolate.  Lots and lots of dark chocolate + cream + sugar = sinful.  

And be sure to take notice of this picture: Oh yes, in case you thought your eyes were deceiving you, I did make this ice cream in an ice cream maker.  My ice cream maker.  I know, I know, I said I would not purchase an ice cream maker.  I lamented the cost, the lack of space in my kitchen, and most importantly, how dangerous it could be to have an appliance that makes ice cream.  But lo and behold, when thrifting last month with my mom, I came across a brand new Cuisinart Automatic Ice Cream Maker, for the steal-of-a-deal price of only $10.  I immediately decided I liked living dangerously and so I snatched it up.     

Once I got the ice cream maker home, I did a little happy dance, and then made some standard vanilla ice cream using the recipe provided by Cuisinart.  (Being a scientist, it's hard to fight the urge to go with a standard 'protocol' the first time you use something new.)  The ice cream turned out alright as far as flavor goes, but I was just tickled pink with how awesome the ice cream maker was.  I mean, I had done the work before to make homemade ice cream by hand, and I would do it again because it tastes so phenomenal; but, having a machine that will churn it for me makes the entire experience just that much better and quicker.   

I think 'quicker' is the operative word, especially considering that I churned out not only one, but two, batches of ice cream for my Labor Day party this past weekend.  The first one was absolutely-to-die-for Salted Butter Caramel Ice Cream from David Lebovitz (I would highly recommend that you give this recipe a try), and for the second, I got a little more adventurous and came up with my own recipe for Dark Chocolate Ice Cream.  

And look at that... when I was all done incorporating the chocolate it was definitely dark.  I used Dutch process cocoa to really bump up the chocolate factor, and I decided to add in a little vanilla and coffee to enhance the flavor of the chocolate.  I also wanted to see how well the ice cream would turn out if I used some fat free milk combined with the cream.  Since fat free milk would usually thin out the ice cream and make it less creamy, I thought this recipe would be a good chance to try it out since I was using a high level of 'solids' (ie. the chocolate and the cocoa powder).      

And guess what?  The recipe was a complete success!  If it's possible, the ice cream turned out even better than I had hoped for.  The taste was amazing, much like a thick, dark chocolate brownie, and with the perfect amount of sweetness.  I think adding the instant coffee and the cocoa really gave it much more depth of flavor than I am used to having with chocolate ice cream.  

And the best part?  After 20 minutes in the ice cream maker, this deliciousness was completely and perfectly frozen (see picture below).  This is a bonus, even when using an ice cream maker, since most recipes don't have any 'solids' and so the semi-frozen mixture will still need to spend an extra hour or so in the freezer to get the right consistency.  What does this mean to all you home-cooks that don't have an ice cream maker (which was me, about a month ago)?  That you can definitely make this recipe too, and although you will still have to spend some time pulling your ice cream out of the freezer to churn it by hand, that time will be significantly less.  Which means you can enjoy this dense, creamy, chocolately indulgence even sooner.     

Dense, Dark Chocolate Ice Cream
I used Hershey's Dark chocolate for this recipe, which is not the darkest you can find, but also not milk chocolate.  If you want to go 'darker' with your chocolate content, adjust the recipe accordingly by adding a bit more sugar. Also, think about experimenting with different chocolate flavors or candy mix-ins; World Market has some really great chocolate varieties that are pretty inexpensive (Chipotle Chili is great!) that could spice up a basic chocolate ice cream like this one.    

1 cup fat free milk
2 egg yolks
2 cups heavy cream
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon dutch process cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon instant coffee powder
2/3 cup sugar
5-6 ounces dark chocolate (I used Hershey's Dark), chopped
1 teaspoon vanilla

Place the fat free milk in a medium bowl (enough to easily hold 3 cups liquid), and place a fine mesh strainer over the bowl.  In a separate small bowl, whisk two egg yolks.  Set both bowls aside.

In a large saucepan, combine heavy cream, cocoa powder, instant coffee, and sugar.  Whisk well to evenly incorporate solids, and then heat over medium-high heat until it just boils.  Remove the pan from the heat, and whisk in the chocolate in three additions, making sure that all the chocolate pieces are dissolved before continuing.  Next, use a soup ladle or large spoon to transfer a small amount of the warm chocolate mixture to the small bowl with the egg yolks; add the hot liquid all at once to the yolks, whisking the yolks constantly.  Then transfer the entire contents of the small bowl back into the saucepan and return to medium-high heat.  Heat the chocolate mixture, stirring constantly, until the liquid begins to thicken slightly.  Remove the pan from the heat.

Strain the chocolate mixture through the fine mesh sieve and into the medium bowl that already contains the fat free milk.  (The sieve catches any egg pieces that might have 'cooked,' so if you don't have a sieve or don't care about if you have some egg in your ice cream, just skip this and add the hot chocolate liquid directly to the milk.)  Finally, stir in the vanilla until everything is smooth, and then transfer the bowl to the fridge to let it cool completely (about 3 hours).  

Once it is cool, process according to instructions on your ice cream maker, or freeze by hand in your freezer.  (See my post here for help, or David Lebovitz's instructions here.)


  1. I still have el rey dark chocolate left over making chocolate condensed milk. Thinking to make another chocolate dish, either pudding or this recipe. Ohhh my Lord, looking so good!

  2. Oh I am sooo excited to find your blog! (via Love and Olive Oil) Gorgeous food, gorgeous photos, and a lovely writing style. And I can relate to the science turned foodie thing too :) Anyway, I'll be following along!

  3. I seriously need an ice cream machine, how much fun it must be with your new toy!

  4. That first picture is to die for. The thickness of it! I love dark chocolate ice cream, so I know I'll love this. I really want an ice cream machine now.

  5. Only $10, you scored! Maybe we could trade some of that ice cream for some of my tomatoes!

  6. I pulled out my Cuisinart 1-quart and made cinnamon gelato on Sunday. Now that it's out, I'm saving this recipe...looks so good!

  7. Yum! Congratulations on a successful and delicious recipe! I also am currently refusing an ice cream maker, but it's mostly because it's dangerous to have around :)

  8. Welcome to the Cuisinart ice-cream maker dark side!

  9. Looks very creamy, smooth and chocolatey!

  10. Yeah, it's hard to resist following standard protocol until you see how everything works in practice. I do it in the lab and I do it in the kitchen. I also have the same ice cream maker, but would you believe that I haven't used it yet? Looks like I'm going to have to try some dark chocolate or salted caramel.

  11. Told you so. XP

    Glad you like it. I've been making sorbet and ice cream like crazy. I have a backlog of recipes and not enough time to post. :D

  12. What a great deal on the ice cream maker. I'm so happy that you gave in and got one! I can't wait to get one myself. I'm pretty much speechless looking at that chocolate ice cream--so thick, and rich, and creamy! Chocolate ice cream is one of my favorite things in the world. Love the addition of instant coffee.

  13. I love my ice cream maker! I think you'll find you get your money's worth pretty quickly. Not only is it fun to use it, but the results are delicious.

    And speaking of delicious, this ice cream looks absolutely mouthwatering! I bet the real treat would be combining a scoop of your chocolate with a scoop of the salted caramel. Now THAT would be ice cream heaven to me.

  14. 10 dollars for an ice cream maker?! What a great find. I'm glad you tried your recipe with fat-free milk since that's all we have at home. I so want to make your ice cream!

  15. Definitely going to have to try this with my ice cream maker!

  16. GEEZ, I need to do some thrift store shopping!! :) I am the same way - I have SO many unique ideas for ice cream flavors - but one more fairly sizable appliance...

    this looks delicious.

  17. What a steal you got on that ice cream maker! Your ice cream looks so creamy and delicious...a great inauguration of your machine!

  18. YOu had me at dense and dark...that's the best way to eat chocolate, I believe! Good for you for snatching up that deal on an IC maker. I love mine!

  19. Your post made me smile, as I have once again put off buying an ice cream maker for the exact reasons you stated. I've promised myself that come next summer I will buy one ! :) This looks amazingly sinful, don't you love when recipes surprise us ?

  20. This looks fantastic! can you send me some via email :P

  21. It looks amazing, very creamy, I need to use mine more often, my problem is I'm lactose sensitive, so I have to stick with frozen yogurt, but it's not the same. I so crave the creamy ice cream. Sigh*

  22. This recipe has been bookmarked in case I faint within the next few seconds. Your chocolate ice-cream looks OMG, so delicious beyond belief!

  23. Ten dollars! You lucky ducky. I've had one on my list FOREVER, but like you I can't justify the cost. I'll look harder in thrift stores, now!

    The ice cream looks soooo good. Still hot here, and I could go for a bowl!

  24. Amanda...WOW! This ice cream looks like thick chocolate frosting, in the best possible way :) We received an ice cream maker as a gift, and use it sparingly (for special occasions?). I think this recipe is the next special occasion calling my name!

    PS--love the thrift shop cooking appliance finds! Adam got our bread machine for free at a yard sale :)

  25. I bought an ice cream maker for my husband because he bragged to me how he could make all these Ben & Jerry type recipes and did it in the past. He hasn't touched the machine once. Of course he eats what comes out of it when I make the ice cream.

    Your chocolate ice cream looks to die for! Great picture.

  26. Wow, such luscious chocolate ice cream, yum!

  27. Indonesia: I remember your condensed milk post, your leftover chocolate would be great for this recipe!

    Amanda: Glad that you are enjoying the blog, I am always excited to have new readers! And did you realize, we have the same name? :D

    Wendy: Cinnamon gelato sounds heavenly, will you share the recipe with us? (or maybe just send me a scoop?)

    Ms. Humble: I think I am in good company here on the dark side. (cue evil laugh)

    Matt: post your recipes! Since I seem to be obsessed, I would love some creative inspiration!

    Julie: Clearly great minds think alike, because I made both the chocolate and the salted caramel ice cream at the same time for the sole reason of eating them together. one bite was like HEAVEN.

    Anna: I am actually thinking of making some frozen yogurt next, maybe I can email you for tips or suggestions?

    Foodiva: Dont faint. Breathe. Then make the ice cream. ;)

    ALL: Buy that ice cream maker you have been dreaming about. It is SERIOUSLY worth it.

  28. It is almost time for me to dust off my ice cream maker! YUM!

  29. oh yeah, I'll take a couple of scoops of that please. No cone required. Theresa

  30. Welcome to the world of homemade ice cream. For the next few weeks, you'll probably find yourself waking up in the middle of the night with the urge to make a specific flavour of ice cream right away. You might also find yourself running out of freezer room because you've got five different kinds of ice creams and sorbets taking up all the room. I'm thinking of starting a support group, but I'm enjoying my obsession too much. :)

  31. You had me at darck chocolate! Delicious looking ice cream! I am totally jealous of your purchase though.. I bought our ice cream maker as a Christmas gift for my boyfriend at a much higher price!

  32. I made salted butter ice cream myself last month! I bet it would be fantastic paired up with that dark chocolate version. Hmm, methinks it is time to make another batch of chocolate brownie batter ice cream. :)

  33. Wow! This dark chocolate ice cream looks to die for! An ice cream maker was one of the best kitchen purchases I made, I'm sure you'll love yours too:)

  34. Wow! That looks so good and so baaad at the same time. That's my diet out of the window. Beautiful ice cream!

  35. This is why I'm very sad (and a tiny bit happy) my ice cream maker broke last summer! I may have to hunt one down after looking at your photos!

  36. Great recipe!!!!! I'm your newest follower.

  37. Dark chocolate is my Achilles heel. And if you've gone and gotten yourself and ice cream maker, then I suppose I ought to cave in and get one too! I don't want to be the last person without one!

  38. Ooohhh...that is dense and dark Chocolate! Yum! That is an amazing find on the ice cream maker! What a deal. Mr. B just bought me the 2 qt. version for an early b'day present. I can make LOTS of choco ice cream in that one! ;)

  39. I got my cuisinart ice cream maker 12 years ago for a wedding present and have loved it ever since. That ice cream is to die for! YUMMY!!!

  40. This sounds and looks so fantastic...I am not a big ice cream eater, but when it is rich and lovely like this...I am there :)

  41. Next I want an icecream maker!! This will be the first recipe I try! Sounds {and looks} delicious!

  42. I have been on the fence over getting an ice cream maker - mostly because of the space and the temptation - but if I came across one for 10$ I would not hesitate! Your ice cream looks positively sinful!

  43. I can't wait to try this out!! Sadly, I've only used my ice cream maker once, but it looks like I should be using it much more than that :)

  44. I know I already commented on this post, I just wanted to let you know that I gave you an award. Please stop by my blog when you get a chance and check it out :)

  45. Wow that looks good. I keep my ice cream bowl in the freezer and might need to whip it out for this! My daughters will be through the moon.

  46. Wow, what a steal of an ice cream maker! And you have put it to such good use! I'm seriously tempted to dig out my ice cream maker and dust it off!

  47. Um, yeah. Dark chocolate ice cream. what more do you need to say! I too, was reluctant to buy an ice cream maker, but I got a pretty good deal (no where near $10! nice job!) and I am so glad I did too. I need to make this, but that salted caramel sounds soo good too. I guess I'll just have to make both!

    I was laughing at your comment about doing the "scientist" thing, by making the regular vanilla ice cream first. I think it's so cool you're a scientist.

    thanks for your sweet comment on my last post! I've so enjoy blogging along-side you as well!

  48. I have no words. That dark chocolate ice cream is like the ultimate dream dessert in my book. Unbelievable!

  49. Oh my God, this looks so incredibly awesome it should be illegal. :) Beautiful, beautiful recipe!

  50. This something that my husband will kill for. Deep/dark chocolate. He will eat the whole recipe.

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  89. I must say...I made this ice cream whilst pregnant a year ago and it was the bees knees - I love deep, dark chocolatey ice cream you can get lost in. And I was trawling the net desperately trying to find the recipe, as I couldn't remember where I'd bookmarked it (later found it in my phone) and I have just made it again and its even better and smoother!!! LOVE IT!

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