2/18/12

homemade chai ice cream with spicy pecans

chai ice cream with spicy pecans

Wanting to make chai ice cream on the spur of the moment and realizing you have no chai tea? Easy peasy! All you need is black tea leaves or even english breakfast tea leaves, along with a few spices, let it seep for a while in a warm milk bath, and eventually you have the beginnings of your ice cream custard. Happy happy!
Why the spicy pecans? Well, for one, my love of spicy pecans (which helps keep Trader Joe's in business btw), and secondly, chai is already gently sweet, so a spicy pecan helps to balance out the sweetness a bit, as well as a hint of texture. I mean who doesn't love texture in ice cream? I don't think I could ever be one of those "smooth" ice cream lovers (unless it's gelato)-- I mean all those calories and no texture, no chocolate/nut/candy surprises to bite into. Sad.
Could you use walnuts? Sure. Peanuts? Why not? Almonds? Indeed, but use those smokehouse almonds and see that magical flavor come about.

chai ice cream with spicy pecans
chai ice cream with spicy pecans
chai ice cream with spicy pecans

chai ice cream with spicy pecans
print recipe

14 ounces of sweetened condensed mik
1 cup whole milk

6-8 regular size black tea bags or the equivalent in loose leaves (if you use chai tea then you might not need the spices—taste test as you go)
¾ cup white sugar
5 large egg yolks
Dash or two fresh ground black pepper
¼ ts salt
1 cup half & half
1 cup heavy cream, room temp
½ cup – ¾ cup of chopped spicy pecans (optional but wonderful)

Spices to use:
(these may not be needed if you use chai tea bags)
I used, a couple pinches of: cloves, cinnamon and fresh ginger.
You can also use a couple pinches of: cardamom, allspice.

Cook notes: I got the spicy pecans from trader joes. You can easily use walnuts, pistachios or even peanuts. You can also make your own candied walnuts too. When the custard is done steeping, do a quick taste test and see what it needs. Some people have different takes/tastes when it comes to chai tea.

IN a large saucepan, bring the milk and condensed milk to an almost boil. Take off heat then add in the tea bags, your spices, and salt. Mix quickly then cover with lid, and let steep at least 1 hour.
Meanwhile, in a mixing bowl, mix the sugar with the five egg yolks, and salt until well combined.
Using a fine mesh strainer, strain the leaves from milk; (not needed if you used tea bags).
Return mixture back to pot and add in the half & half; bring to a simmer.
Take your egg mixture and slowly, a few tablespoons to begin with, then gradually ¼ cup at a time, add in the hot mixture. Do not add in all at once as you will cook the eggs. Once the mixture is nicely tempered, pour mixture back into the pot and heat on low heat. Whisk for a while until mixture is slightly thickened. DO NOT BOIL!
Once a thickness has developed, remove from heat, strain into a bowl, and cool.
Stir in the room temp. heavy cream.
Cover and refrigerate until cold or overnight.
When ready to churn in ice cream maker, churn according to the ice cream manufacturer directions. At the last 2-3 minutes of churning add in your ½ cup (or more if desired) of spicy pecans.

26 comments:

  1. I am definitely a lover of chai and the spicy pecans top it all off.

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  2. i have so much leftover chai tea i don't know what to do with…more recipes please!

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  3. oh boy, do i love chai tea lattes... i think this might be my kind of ice cream :) even better perhaps with the coconut chai black tea! i always love goodies in my ice cream too, except then i go about picking them all out ;)

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  4. Yum! I love ice cream, and you're so right about the texture thing, although I'd never noticed it before. The spiced pecans sound perfect.

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  5. I'm posting chai cupcakes this week and I'm thinking they NEED to be topped with this. It'll be a chai explosion.

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  6. Thanks for sharing Dawn...this is a KO of a recipe...POW!

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  7. I don't even "love" ice cream (I love cookies and brownies) and this makes me wannnnna indulge...the closeup pics are just so tempting! YUM!

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  8. I love all things chai. Somebody has probably asked this before, but what kind of ice cream maker do you use? I'm still on the fence. :-)

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  9. count me among the lovers of chai--it's the one and only tea i'll drink. fabulous ice cream!

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  10. LOUISE:
    I use an old Cusinart ice cream maker. I put the thing thru hell, so it's a great little powerhouse.

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  11. Oh yeah! I love it when I start seeing ice cream recipes on the blogosphere. Chai ice cream... such a great idea.

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  12. Wow I am a chai love this is so well done. We love ice cream in my house, that is such a great treat.

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  13. Love this flavor. I bet the spicy pecans are a nice surprise inside.

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  14. Just drooling! I wish I could have a scoop to get my through my afternoon. I just stumbled on your blog today...and I'm glad I did. Drool worthy recipes and great writing. Thank you for sharing. I hope you have a fantastic start to your week. I'm about to get baking again!

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  15. oh my goodness ... this is NOT good news for an ice cream feen such as myself!! I need this as soon as possible - - YUMMMM!!

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  16. your creative recipes are such an inspiration to me!

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  17. Moi qui réalise des glaces toute l'année, je suis conquise par ta recette
    Je te souhaite une belle journée
    Valérie.

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  18. I had to restrain myself from licking my computer screen. Three of my favorite things- chai, ice cream and pecans in one (or many) delicious bites. I will be making this over the weekend and reporting back.

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  19. Is this paleo! Ha! I love the spiced nuts idea. So jealous you went to Kelly's last week, I miss that place. May have to go up there just for a good sandwich!

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  20. I am loving the combination of the creamy ice cream, sweet chai flavor, and the spicy pecans. A match made in heaven.

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  21. mmm I like how you just kind of combined different spices and tea to make chai. I am not so much for coffee flavored things, but I love the delicate sweetness of chai! And when I bake I put nuts in everything, so you don't even have to explain the pecan part. I am trying this in the summer.

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  22. This is amazing! Chia icecream would be so awesome! It would be cool to eat the icecream in the italian sytle (coffee over icecream).

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  23. I'm teaching an Indian cooking class four times in the next two weeks and I wish I had the energy to make a couple of batches of this to serve at the end!

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