With ice cream being one of my go-to desserts, I’m coming to appreciate what my favorites truly are and they all seem to have one thing in common: they’re spice flavored. There’s something fun and eye-opening for me when it comes to enjoying spices in this form. Today’s star of the show: anise.
This ice cream was very tasty. I love anise (and anise flavored things), but toasted anise is something very different from normal anise that is hard to describe. Its still licoricey sweet, but less forward and with a light, spicy smoky character to it. I found it to be a wonderful flavor and it plays very well with citrus and in ice cream form, well, I was just smitten.
This recipe was derived from David Lebovitz’s The Perfect Scoop.
- 2 tsp anise seeds
- 1 cup whole milk
- 2 cups heavy cream
- ~3/4 cup sugar
- 1.5 tbsp honey
- zest of 2 oranges
- 6 egg yolks
- Optional: candied citrus
Firstly, decide if you want to have chunks of candied citrus mixed into your ice cream. I had some handy from a previous dessert (recipe posted there), so it was convenient.
Begin by toasting the whole anise seeds in a dry pan over medium heat for roughly 2-3 minutes. They should let out a fantastic aroma. Add the milk, 1 cup of the heavy cream, sugar, honey, and orange zest. Scald the mixture and stir to dissolve the sugar and honey. Cover, remove from heat, and let this steep for an hour.
When time is up, strain the solids out of this mixture and return it to the pan. Warm this back up to medium heat.
Set up a bowl with the remaining 1 cup of cream in it, sitting in an ice bath with a strainer on top.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the egg yolks until lightened in color and temper with the hot mixture. Pour the yolks into the saucepan and stir constantly over medium heat. Cook until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon (figure roughly 5 minutes).
Pour the cooked custard through the strainer into the chilled cream. Whisk this and let it cool down for a few minutes before covering tightly with plastic wrap and transferring to the fridge for several hours.
With the custard sufficiently cool, churn in your ice cream maker per the instructions that came with it for roughly 20 minutes. Throw in the coarsely chopped candied citrus during the last minute to mix it into the ice cream (keep in mind, the pieces will firm up in the freezer, so be mindful of how big/small your pieces are).
Transfer this to the freezer overnight to firm up before you fill yourself a bowl. Enjoy!