bitter orange ice cream, recipe no. 5

I know I should be more humble, but I spend a lot of my day praising other people (namely, my kids) for every. little. thing. they do. You tied your own shoe! Nice job writing your name! Wow, you really are good at blowing your nose! So, forgive me as I brag about myself for a little bit.... JOHNNY IUZZINI REPOSTED MY INSTAGRAM PICTURE OF THIS RECIPE!!!!!!

I tagged him in an Instagram post for this recipe and mentioned that I was making this bitter orange ice cream as I cook my way through his cookbook "Sugar Rush." And, a few hours later, I basically got the best Christmas gift I got this year when my phone lit up to tell me that my post had been reposted. By Johnny Iuzzini. The co-host of The Great American Baking Show. That Johnny Iuzzini! And this is what he said:

"Fantastic! I live when people post as they bake their way through my book #SugarRush. Lots of recipes for every kind of dietary need. I'm glad you enjoy them! Happy Holidays."

You can go to his feed right now and check it out. It's still there... surrounded by pictures of Mary Berry and delicious treats. 

bitter orange ice cream with intense chocolate mousse cake

Soooo, brag over. Onto the recipe. This recipe is really interesting. I'm a huge fan of weird ice cream flavors. Give me lavender ice cream or even Jeni's "Green" any day over chocolate. That said, this is a crazy ice cream flavor. It's not immediately delicious. True to its name, it is bitter. But, just at first. The bitterness of the orange rind is quickly followed by sweetness and creaminess. It's... interesting. And, worth making and definitely worth pairing with a rich chocolate cake. Try this one.

Bitter Orange Ice Cream, (makes about 1 quart)

  • 2 large navel oranges, unpeeled, washed & quartered
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 6 large egg yolks
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt

This recipe is best done over the course of a few days. I burnt my oranges on Day 1, made the ice cream base on Day 2, and spun the ice cream down on Day 3. 

To burn your oranges, preheat oven to 450 degrees. Wash and cut your oranges into quarters. Leave the peel on. Place oranges, cut side down on a rack, resting on a foil-lined baking sheet. Roast oranges in oven for 45- 60 minutes, flipping the quarters after about 30 minutes. When the rinds are blackened and the orange flesh looks slightly charred, remove slices from the oven and let cool completely.

To make the ice cream base, combine cooled orange pieces (do not peel!) and 1 cup milk in a blender and puree until smooth. Add additional milk if needed to liquefy the puree. Pour mixture, remaining milk, heavy cream, and 1/4 cup sugar into a heavy-bottomed saucepan. Heat over medium-heat, stirring occasionally, until steaming but not boiling. This should take about 4 minutes.

While this mixture heats, combine egg yolks, 1/2 cup sugar, and salt in a separate bowl. Whisk until the mixture turns pale yellow. Remove milk mixture from the heat and add about half to the egg yolk mixture. This is how you temper your eggs. Stir gently for a minute and then pour entire bowl back into the warmed stovetop milk mixture. 

Return pot to medium-low heat and stir constantly with a rubber spatula until ice cream base is hot to the touch, but is not boiling. You'll know it's done when the custard holds a trail on the back of your spatula or when the temperature hovers around 180 degrees. Don't rush this or you'll end up with scrambled eggs. For reals.

When custard is done, pour into a zip-lock bag and place in an ice bath for approximately 30 minutes. Then move custard to the fridge to sit overnight.

The next day, strain the custard through a fine mesh sieve, pushing all the liquid through the sieve with a rubber spatula. If you venture a taste of the custard before straining, you'll think that you made a mistake. The custard will taste overly bitter and you'll panic, thinking you need to add honey and stat! But, trust the recipe....strain the custard and taste the smooth mixture. Yes, a little bitter, but also creamy and sweet!

Add strained custard to your ice cream canister and spin down until ice cream has the consistency of soft-serve ice cream. Transfer to an airtight ice cream container and freeze at least 4 hours before serving. Ice cream lasts 1-2 weeks in the freezer. 


WOW FACTOR: wowee! (You may not win every ice cream lover over with this flavor. It's different. But, it IS delicious and served with a rich chocolate cake, it is PERFECT.)