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This delicious homemade maple walnut ice cream recipe gets its rich flavor from two simple steps: Concentrating the maple syrup by simmering it for 10 minutes and toasting the walnuts.
Total Time: 60 minutes, plus about 6 hours chilling time
Hands-On Time: 40 minutes
Yield: About 1 quart
- 2/3 cup walnut halves
- 3/4 cup maple syrup
- 1-3/4 cups heavy cream
- 1-1/4 cups whole milk
- 5 egg yolks
- 1/4 teaspoon table salt
First, toast the nuts: Heat your oven to 325° and set a rack to the middle position. Arrange walnuts on a rimmed baking sheet and toast until lightly browned and fragrant, 10 to 12 minutes. Chop and set aside.
In a 3- to 4-quart saucepan, bring maple syrup to a simmer over medium heat. Stay close by, as syrup can boil over (reduce heat as necessary). Simmer until syrup is reduced to 1/2 cup, 8 to 10 minutes. Add cream, then milk and salt; reduce heat to low.
Meanwhile, beat egg yolks in a small bowl. Whisk about a cup of the cream mixture into the egg yolks. Add another cup, whisking constantly, then pour the egg mixture back into the pot with the rest of the cream.
Turn the heat to medium-low and cook the custard, stirring continuously, until the mixture reaches 175° on an instant-read thermometer (this is the point at which it will thicken noticeably). Remove from heat, and pour through a fine-mesh sieve into a medium-size bowl. Take a piece of plastic wrap and press it against the surface of the custard to prevent a skin from forming. Transfer the custard to the refrigerator and chill until the temperature reaches 35°-40°, about 6 hours or up to overnight. (You may speed up this process by setting the bowl of custard into a larger bowl filled of ice water and stirring to cool it down.)
Pour the chilled custard into your ice-cream maker, leaving 3/4 inch at the top to allow for expansion. Preapare according to freezer instructions. Add walnuts during final 10 minutes of chilling.