What ho! I have internet again! Let’s GET DOWN TO IT.
[At some point in the future I'm going to provide the recipe for Espresso Bombs, but suffice it to say that they're essentially single servings of chilled coffee ganache, topped with chocolate-covered espresso beans. Chocolate, cream, espresso: an unholy trinity of awesome that inspired this ice cream.]
Julia Lambert and I take our birthday desserts VERY SERIOUSLY, especially when we get to celebrate our birthday together, so I have a zillion intense Gchat conversations in my archives devoted to the discussion of cake and ice cream for this past weekend. We went back and forth on the cake for a while, but once we’d made our decision, the ice cream was a no-brainer: it had to be chocolate. Our dad was also in NYC this weekend, and have I mentioned whence cometh my sweet tooth? This guy. He asked if he could man the blender and make us some boozy mudslide milkshakes, and we realized our chocolate ice cream was going to need a major coffee kick. We may be breaking with mudslide tradition slightly, but I think once you taste this ice cream you’ll forgive us.
There are generally two ways of making coffee ice cream: using instant coffee/espresso or infusing the custard with whole coffee beans. My guess is that most baking gurus would say to infuse (heat cream, milk, sugar, and coffee beans, allow to steep for an hour, then continue making ice cream as usual, straining the beans out of the custard before chilling and freezing), but here’s the thing: I’m hugely caffeine-sensitive. I drink coffee only under the direst circumstances, and with the understanding that my appetite and energy levels will be screwy for the next day and a half. So I don’t have any coffee beans in the apartment, but I do have a jar of espresso powder, because I’m a baker and most things chocolate-adjacent taste richer and deeper with a teaspoon or so of espresso powder tossed in, and for some reason the caffeine doesn’t bug me as much when it’s not served straight-up. So I’m going to be lazy and use that here. Those of you who ARE coffee drinkers will probably thank me for preserving your coffee beans for their intended use.
Espresso Bomb Ice Cream
Inspired by recipes from David Lebovitz and Marcel Desaulniers
2 c. heavy cream
1 tbsp. unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
5 oz. semisweet chocolate
1 c. whole milk
3/4 c. granulated sugar
5 tbsp. instant espresso powder
pinch of salt
5 large egg yolks, room temperature
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
Place a heavy-duty gallon-size freezer ziplock bag in a large Pyrex measuring cup, set aside. Coarsely chop the semisweet chocolate.
In a medium saucepan, combine 1 c. of the cream, the espresso powder, and the cocoa powder and bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the cocoa and espresso. Reduce the heat and let the mixture simmer for about 30 seconds, and then remove from heat. Stir in the chopped chocolate until smooth, and then whisk in the remaining cup of cream. Pour the chocolate mixture into the ziplock bag and set a mesh strainer on top of the measuring cup.
Fill a large bowl with ice and set aside.
Using the same saucepan, whisk together the milk, sugar, and salt and warm the mixture over medium-low heat. In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks. Slowly whisk the milk mixture into the egg yolks in a slow, steady stream. Pour the custard back into the saucepan and heat until it reaches approximately 160-165 degrees Fahrenheit, thickens, and coats the back of a spoon. Pour the custard through the strainer into the chocolate-cream mixture in the ziplock bag, add the vanilla extract, and stir. Press as much air as possible out of the ziplock bag and seal.
Place the sealed bag in the bowl of ice, top with more ice cubes, and then add cold water until bowl is full. Allow the ice cream custard to cool completely, around 40-60 minutes. Freeze in your ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions.
For mudslides according to Père Sweets, toss a few scoops of ice cream in a blender with some crushed ice, a splash of Kahlua, and a splash of chocolate liqueur. You can figure out the rest, I daresay. Enjoy!
“Lucia” by Fauve
It’s not often that you find beige or brown lingerie that’s particularly elegant, sexy, or thrilling, especially in the full-bust market. More often these colors are reserved for seamless or molded basics that don’t embrace the warmth and depth of rich chocolate shades. Fauve steps up to the plate, however, presenting their Lucia range in a gleaming chocolate satin that perfectly matches the silkiness and depth of our ice cream. While the earlier Ruby and Blue shades (some sizes still available on sale) are, for me, the ones that got away, the subtle glamor of the Chocolate shade has a seductive appeal. The details in the Lucia range are truly stunning: the black lace trim is elegant and sophisticated, I adore the asymmetrically-placed fabric bows that appear on the bras and accessories, and beautiful suspender belts get me every time. The briefs even feature a sexy sheer back with a ruched seam, which is great for curvy rears, topped with yet another sassy bow.
Fauve is a bit more luxurious than sister brand Freya, and is priced accordingly, but I think the elegant details make it absolutely worth it. A Sophisticated Pair published a great preview of Fauve’s Spring/Summer 2013 line last week, and Autumn/Winter 2012 styles are just beginning to hit stores. I think the A/W 2012 collection was photographed a bit . . . strangely for the brochure, but the lingerie itself is lovely as ever. Check it out!