Food memories emerge early. My mother’s girlhood favorite if rare treat was a chocolate malt at The Bay, a big downtown department store in Winnipeg. She vowed, “When I have money, I’ll buy a chocolate malt every day” – this, in the 1940s, when a malt cost a whole nickel.
Later, Mom led chocolate malt pilgrimages with daughters in hand. Winter or summer, every trip to Winnipeg, we’d trek to the basement of The Bay for chocolate malts.
My budding inner foodie coveted the hot dogs twirling brown inside the counter rotisserie. But when Mom was buying, malts it would be. Thick. Creamy. Rich. Dark with chocolate, deep with malt. Slow to melt. At first, we’d need spoons, then suck through straws, our cheeks concave.
Such a treat! Mom passed on the penchant to me. Now I share it with you – or close enough, no trip to the Manitoba prairie required. Treat yourself often, if not every day.
CHOCOLATE MALT ICE CREAM
Time to table: 24 hours
Makes 3 cups
- 3 cups half & half (or half cream & half whole milk)
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 4 egg yolks
- 2/3 cup malted milk powder
- 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
In a medium saucepan, gently warm half & half and sugar, stirring often at first, then frequently, til small bubbles form along the edge.
Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, whisk yolks til smooth, then whisk in malted milk powder and cocoa powder until fully incorporated. A quarter cup at a time, add hot milk mixture to egg mixture, whisking well after each addition. Return mixture to pan and cook over medium heat, stirring nearly constantly, until it begins to thicken. (Experienced custard makers may stir less often though at risk of scorching the mixture if time gets away.) Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Transfer to a refrigerator container, let cool, cover and refrigerate for 8 – 24 hours.
Process the cold mixture in a commercial ice cream processor until thick. Serve immediately or hold in the freezer for an hour.
For chocolate malts, mix chocolate malt ice cream with milk in a blender.
POWER TOOLS for KITCHENS
Six years ago, a friend -- the famous Phyliss whose Fresh Tomato Sauce so many love -- visited from Texas. She wanted to bring home-grown Meyer lemons for lemon sorbet. "You have an ice cream maker, don't you?" Well. No. I didn't. "Oh, Alanna. You really will love having an ice cream maker. And they're not that expensive, $40 or $50."
So I bought an ice cream maker -- the Cuisinart ice cream maker but there are other ice cream makers too -- that very day. And she's right. I really do love having an ice cream maker! It's so easy to make ice cream from just a handful of ingredients, no preservatives, no fillers and none of the high prices that grocery stores exact for ice cream these days. I especially love making simple ice creams and ones with unusual flavors.
Summer is nearly here, Mother's Day too. If your family loves-loves-loves ice cream, an ice cream maker or the ice cream cookbook is worth considering as a family gift.
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