It’s mid-summer and you know what that means. It’s ice cream season! Or wait, is every season ice cream season…? Yes, yes it is. And while I love pretty much every flavor of ice cream, butter pecan has always been one of my favorites. I almost made a maple butter pecan ice cream for y’all, but I decided to take it one step further down the tasty trail and add in some bourbon. I just felt like that would be the perfect flavor to compliment this ice cream. And boy, oh boy was I right. This ice cream is so good.
I’ve made this tasty treat dairy free by using a coconut milk base and egg yolks to make it nice and creamy. While I would usually just add in the egg yolks without cooking, I had to make this pregnancy-friendly by cooking the egg yolks to 175ºF/80ºC. The bourbon is also heated to evaporate most of the alcohol. So, this dessert is safe for everyone!
One quick note, after running the ice cream through your ice cream machine it will be a thick soft-serve consistency. It can be enjoyed right away or hardened in the freezer for about 30 mins to an hour or until you get a hardness you like. BUT if you have leftovers and freeze it overnight, it will become much harder than traditional dairy ice cream and will take a little longer to thaw to a scoopable consistency. Probably 20-30 minutes, depending on the temperature of your kitchen. But let’s be honest, this longer thawing time is probably a good insurance against taking a “passing spoonful” every time you’re in the kitchen. Not that I would ever do such a thing, of course 😉
- 4 cups full fat coconut milk (950mL)
- 1 large vanilla bean (or 2 small beans), scraped
- ½ cup pure maple syrup (104g)
- ⅓ cup fresh medjool dates, pitted (85g, ~4 large dates)
- ¼ cup bourbon (60mL)
- 4 egg yolks
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ½ tsp sea salt
- 1½ pecans (~170g)
- Chill your ice cream canister in the freezer, according to the directions for you ice cream maker.
- Place all ingredients except pecans in a blender. Blend on high until smooth.
- Pour liquid into medium-sized saucepan and heat over medium-low for about 15 minutes or until reaching a temperature of 175-178ºF (79-81ºC). This will allow the majority of the alcohol to burn off and the egg yolks to come to a safe temperature. Be careful not to heat beyond 178ºF/81ºC because the eggs will overcook.
- Remove from heat and pour the liquid into a shallow glass dish, preferably one with a lid. Place the dish into the refrigerator for about an hour or until the liquid is nice and cold.
- While the liquid is chilling, toast the pecans at 350ºF (177ºC) for 6-8 minutes or until slightly browned.
- Chop the pecans and set aside to cool.
- Prepare your ice cream machine and churn the ice cream according to the directions on your machine. Near the end of the cycle, once the ice cream is a soft serve consistency, add the chopped pecans.
- Continue until the ice cream is finished (according to the directions on your machine).
- Scoop the ice cream back into the glass container.
- Place the lid on or cover with plastic wrap.
- Freeze until it thickens to your desired consistency.
What’s your favorite ice cream flavor? Let me know in the comments section below!