Hi guys. So, I’m back! And I decided to sneak in a little ice cream before the summer is over.
This is a new and improved version of my classic chocolate ice cream recipe. If you love chocolate ice cream, you really HAVE to try this. The combination of semi-sweet chocolate and cocoa powder provide the perfect balance of chocolate flavor. And those chocolate chunks… well, who doesn’t like a little extra chocolate? And crunch. It is just so, so good.
Maybe I should let the ice cream speak for itself and explain why I haven’t blogged in so long. It was a little painful. I mean, I’ve been going through blogging withdrawal. I’ve been cooking more than ever (I will get to that in a second), but I guess I really missed the photography. I felt a bit rusty during this shoot, but hopefully you guys can appreciate my effort. I feel like I’m back in the game now.
So anyway, I started a new job! And moved. So I’m finally settling down in my new role and new apartment. I may have had a rough start (very rough), but I’m doing something pretty damn cool. I’m working as an assistant to a food photographer and chef! It still hasn’t completely hit me, but I gave up my well-paying, stable job as a dietitian/food service manager to pursue my dreams. I’m not typically a risk taker, but I needed to do this. I was so unhappy and unfulfilled, so I made a big leap, which I think will pay off in the long run.
My boss is a really amazing mentor. He grew up in Milan, Italy and worked as a chef for many years. Over the past decade, he became very successful in the food photography world. He works with big restaurants in New York City, has been involved in print work for cookbooks and magazines, and has also shot photos for a number of well-known, commercial ads.
Check him out here: http://www.francescotonelli.com
Or follow him here: https://www.instagram.com/francescotonelli/
I can’t tell you how cool it is to get one-on-one cooking lessons from such an awesome, Italain chef. Well, it’s a little less cool when I screw things up, but still generally very cool. I’m pretty darn lucky to have landed this gig.
As awesome as my job is, it’s not quite as glamorous as it might sound. Someone has to wash the dishes, clean the floors, take out the trash, manage office work (ok that one’s not so bad…but did I mention the dishes?), and that’s me. Also, for the time being, my boss takes care of all the photography related work. The plan is for me to be more involved someday. Someday…but there’s lots to learn first.
I also just moved to New Jersey. Yikes, I know. I do really miss New York City living, but on the plus side I’m only 20-30 minutes from upper Manhattan, and spend a few days a week in the city with my friends or boyfriend. So it’s okay. I’m okay.
The other struggle is financial in nature, but let’s not get into that right now. I’m already stressed as it is. Deep breaths. Despite all the hurdles and sacrifice, I am much happier and know a few of the set backs are only temporarily.
I think my whole point is, I’ve just started this new, amazing, scary, exciting, anxiety-ridden, beautiful path. My hopes are to grow and learn and advance in my current position, which could lead to so many cool opportunities. But whether I have this job for another 10 weeks or 10 years, I’ll still be cooking and taking pictures. I can promise you that. Wow.Longest.Blog.Post.Ever. Now go make some ice cream!
- 6oz semi-sweet chocolate, divided
- 2C heavy cream
- 1C whole milk
- ¼C cocoa powder
- 1 tsp instant espresso powder
- Dash of salt
- 6 egg yolks
- 2/3C sugar
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- Finely chop 3 ounces of the chocolate and place into a large bowl. Place a sieve over the bowl and set aside. Combine the cream, milk, cocoa, espresso and salt in a medium saucepan. Warm over medium heat until the mixture comes to a slight simmer.
- Meanwhile, beat egg yolks and sugar until pale and creamy, about 3-5 minutes. Temper eggs by slowly pouring about a ½ cup of the cream mixture into the egg mixture, while constantly whisking. Pour the tempered egg mixture into the pot, while vigorously whisking. Continue to whisk, scraping down the sides of the pan, for about 3-5 minutes or until the custard is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Stir in vanilla.
- Pour the ice cream base over the bowl of chopped chocolate through the sieve to remove any lumps. Whisk in chocolate to melt and incorporate. Cool at room temperature. Cover with plastic wrap touching the surface to avoid forming a skin. Chill in fridge at least 4-6 hours or up to 24 hours.
- Chop the remaining chocolate into small chunks. Freeze the ice cream base using a machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions. When it’s about ¾ of the way frozen, add the chopped chocolate and continue to churn until done. Transfer to the freezer to freeze completely. For easier scooping, allow to come to room temperature for about 10 minutes before serving. Enjoy.
- Total time doesn't reflect time needed to chill and churn the ice cream.
- Yields 1 quart.