Salted Caramel Pecan Ice Cream
3 cups half and half
1 vanilla bean split down the middle
6 egg yolks
2/3 cup sugar
1 tsp kosher salt
1 cup toasted pecans, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup dulce de leche or caramel, warmed enough to be able to swirl
When ready to cook, set temperature to High and preheat, lid closed for 15 minutes.
Place a large pan on the grill to preheat. Toast the pecans on the grillfor 10 -15 mintues until lightly browned. Let pecans cook, then chop and set aside.
In a medium saucepan, warm the half and half. Scrape the seeds out of the vanilla bean with the back of a paring knife, then place the seeds and the bean in the half and half. Turn off the heat, cover, and steep for 30 minutes.
Remove the vanilla bean and reheat the half and half until small bubbles form around the edge.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar, and salt. Steady the bowl with a towel beneath it. Slowly whisk in a small amount of half-and-half to temper the egg mixture, then whisk in the rest to combine. Pour it all back into the sauce pan.
Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the egg mixture thickens and can coat the back of a spoon, about 5 minutes. Note: If the eggs start to “scramble,” remove from the heat immediately.
Strain mixture through a fine mesh sieve. Chill the ice cream base in the refrigerator, or place over an ice bath to chill immediately.
Freeze the ice cream according to ice cream machine instructions. When the ice cream starts to thickened, add in the chopped pecans.
Remove the ice cream from the machine, drizzle the caramel over the ice cream and gently fold to swirl. Place immediately in a freezer-safe container, cover with a layer of plastic wrap directly on the ice cream and freeze until completely set.
Ice cream can be made up to 3 days in advance. When ready to serve, allow to sit out for 10 minutes to soften. Top with salt flakes. Enjoy!
*Cook times will vary depending on set and ambient temperatures.
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