Crème Fraîche Ice Cream with Chocolate Turtletop Shell
“Almost everyone has fond memories of ice cream cones dipped in brittle chocolate,” Gus Rancatore of Toscanini's Ice Cream says. This recipe was created by poet Adam Tessier, who discovered that in 1955, writer Marianne Moore was offered a chance to name the new Ford Edsel automobile. “Utopian Turtletop” was one of her suggestions. “The car had problems beyond the name,” Rancatore says, “but the shell is just fine.”
Prepare an ice bath: Fill a large bowl with ice. Find a medium bowl that will nest inside it, along with a sieve. You’ll use these to cool the custard later.
FOR THE CRÈME FRAÎCHE ICE CREAM
Combine the milk, sugar, vanilla bean, and salt in a small saucepan over low heat. Warm until the mixture begins to cling to the sides of the pan. In a medium-size bowl, whisk the egg yolks.
Whisk the milk mixture gradually into the egg yolks, a little at a time, to form a custard base. Remove the vanilla bean. (To store it for future use, rinse the pod well using water or vodka. Pat it dry and refrigerate the bean in a container filled with white sugar. The sugar will also absorb the vanilla flavor, making it great for baking.)
Return the mixture to saucepan and stir over low heat. Be careful not to overheat and scramble eggs. The custard is ready when it’s just thick enough to write an initial in it on the side of a wooden spoon. Strain the custard into a medium-size bowl and set over the ice bath to stop cooking. Stir in the crème fraîche.
Cover and refrigerate until mixture reaches 40°F, at least 12 hours. Freeze in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer instructions.
FOR THE CHOCOLATE TURTLETOP
Combine the semisweet chocolate and the coconut oil in a double boiler set over medium heat. Stir until smooth. Remove from heat and add a pinch of salt, to taste. Just before serving, spoon the chocolate mixture over the ice cream; the mixture will harden into a fragile chocolate shell.
Recipe by Gus Rancatore
Photography by Ekaterina Smirnova
Styling by Catrine Kelty