Sunday, October 24, 2010

Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream

When I read a post on Serious Eats about a seasonal flavor of Jello Instant Pudding, I knew I had to use it to make my quick and easy ice cream. Although I'm a big fan of making things completely from scratch, I've been known to cheat once in a while. Using pudding mix to make an ice cream base is one of those cheats. It easy and foolproof.

And Pumpkin Pie flavor sounded like a great idea for ice cream. The review on Serious Eats said that the flavor was better as a mousse than a pudding, so I figured that it would be even better in ice cream, where the flavors would be even more subtle.

Don't get me wrong - I like pumpkin pie. But I don't like a lot of it. A couple bites is fine, but I prefer it when the flavor is muted a bit. Pumpkin cheesecake, for example. Or pumpkin mousse. This ice cream is like that.

Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream

1 package Pumpkin Pie flavored Jello Instant Pudding
3/4 cup white sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 quart half and half
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

In a bowl, combine the pudding, sugar and salt. (Stirring it well while it's dry helps it keep from clumping.) Add the cream and vanilla, and stir until the sugar is dissolved and everything is well combined. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate the mixture for at least an hour, or overnight.

Stir or whisk the mixture to make it pourable and churn it in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions.