- 1 vanilla bean
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 5 large eggs
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- With a small sharp knife cut the vanilla bean in half lengthwise.
- Place the milk and cream in a small, heavy saucepan. Using the tip of the knife, scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean halves into the milk and add both halves to the saucepan.
- Set the saucepan on the stovetop and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Remove from the heat.
- Crack the eggs and whisk the eggs and sugar in a mixing bowl until pale yellow and well combined, about 2 minutes.
- Using a ladle, add about 1/2 cup of the hot milk mixture to the eggs and whisk to combine.
- Add the egg mixture to the hot milk in the saucepan and stir well with a wooden spoon.
- Return the pan to medium heat and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture is slightly thickened and coats the back of a spoon, about 5 minutes. This is called a custard.
- Remove the custard from the heat and strain through a fine mesh strainer into a clean mixing bowl, pressing down on the strainer with a rubber spatula to get as much liquid as possible into the bowl.
- Discard the vanilla bean halves and any other solids sticking to the strainer.
- Add the vanilla extract to the bowl. Stir the custard for 5 minutes with a whisk until cooled slightly.
- Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, pressing the wrap gently against the surface of the custard. Refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, about 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
- Pour the custard into the bowl of an ice-cream maker and process according to manufacturerís directions.
- Serve immediately or transfer to an airtight plastic container and store in the freezer for up to 1 week.
- This recipe calls for a lot of hot liquidóbe careful!
- Pressing the plastic wrap onto the surface of the custard ensures that no thick ìskinî will form on the top.