How Much Should A 4 1/2 Month Old Eat In Search of German Chocolate Ice Cream

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In Search of German Chocolate Ice Cream

I have always loved German chocolate cake not for the cake itself, but rather for the wonderful filling! I could eat a bowl of the filling without a problem! A few years ago, I “discovered” Haagen Dazs German chocolate ice cream and tried it. It was, needless to say, delicious. However, my pleasure was short because it was only a seasonal taste. Over the next few years, I faithfully checked the Haagen Dazs display in EVERY supermarket I visited but to no avail. I only ran across it one more time – hardly enough to satisfy my palate! Then, a few months ago, while visiting Smith’s neighborhood, I found a German chocolate ice cream under the supermarket’s “Private Selection” label. I bought it and couldn’t wait to get home to taste it. My excitement was unfortunately short lived; The taste fell far short of my expectations. I finally realized the only way I was going to get any satisfaction for my ice cream cravings was if I made it myself.

Making this specialty ice cream involves a two-step process: creating the German chocolate filling and preparing the chocolate ice cream. I immediately went looking for recipes. I make German chocolate filling in my kitchen at work but I don’t need twenty pounds of it! I had to find a recipe with a considerably smaller yield. I visited several websites and found similar recipes. Once I knew what ingredients the recipe should contain, I chose one from Allrecipes.com that matched my criteria. For the ice cream portion, I modified a recipe I chose from Mable and Gar Hoffman’s 1981 book, “Ice Cream”. I substituted a smaller volume of Half and Half for regular whole milk to get a richer ice cream. The end result was delicious and a suitable substitute for the Haagen Dazs version I so crave. Although the ice cream is easy to make and involves a few more steps, it is, in my opinion, well worth the effort.

As a side note, when I try this recipe in the future, I will only bake the German chocolate filling at about 170 degrees. I will also consider using a pastry bag and piping it to the finished ice cream that I just removed from the machine. This procedure might give me more of a gooey filling to bite into instead of a firmer piece.

German chocolate filling

1 cup of sugar

1 cup evaporated milk

1/2 cup butter, cut into pieces

3 egg yolks

1 cup of flaked coconut

1 cup finely chopped pecans

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Combine the sugar, evaporated milk and egg yolks in the top portion of a double boiler or in a large metal bowl. Add the pieces of butter. Cook over simmering water, stirring occasionally, until the mixture thickens and reaches 180 degrees on a thermometer. Remove from the water and mix in the coconut, pecans and vanilla. Cool to room temperature, then put in a smaller bowl or a plastic container and cover by placing plastic wrap directly on the surface of the filling. Refrigerate overnight. Line a baking sheet with wax paper or parchment paper and pipe or drop the filling in teaspoon-sized mounds on the sheet. Freeze for at least two hours.

An important note – When I prepare German chocolate filling, whether it is at home or at work, I prefer to cook it on a double pan instead of in a pan directly on the heat. This allows me to do other things while the filling is cooking besides just standing over it and stirring. It also minimizes the risk of overcooking and scrambling the egg. While the filling is cooking, I prepare the ice cream base.

Chocolate ice cream

1-1/3 cups sugar

1 tablespoon corn

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup whole milk

2 cups half and half

2 eggs, beaten

3 oz. semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped (I used Trader Joe’s 70% chocolate bars – remember, better quality chocolate makes for a tastier ice cream)

4 oz. evaporated milk (if you buy a 12oz can, you’ll use 8oz in the filling recipe and the rest in this recipe)

1 cup whipping cream

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Combine the sugar, corn and salt in a medium saucepan. Stir in the milk and half and half. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture begins to simmer. Put the beaten eggs in a small bowl. Stir about half of the hot milk mixture into the eggs, then pour it back into the remaining hot milk mixture in the saucepan. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture is slightly thickened, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and immediately add the chopped chocolate. Stir until the chocolate is completely melted. Strain the mixture through a fine sieve. Stir in the evaporated milk, whipping cream and vanilla. Cool to room temperature, then refrigerate until cold (you could technically use the mixture after it has reached room temperature, but it will take longer to freeze). Pour the mixture into the ice cream container and freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

While the mixture is freezing, place a large metal bowl in the freezer. Unwrap the German chocolate pieces from the wax paper. When the ice cream is finished, put it in the bowl you kept in the freezer and stir in the German chocolate chips. Place in a container and allow the ice cream to harden. Enjoy!

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