Or, “Cookies & Cream Ice Cream…made with Halloween Oreos.” So the only Halloween-specific component of this ice cream is the orange-tinted Oreo filling. And the fact that I’m posting it in October. But it looks festive, which makes it taste a million times better, right? This ice cream tastes like your classic Cookies & Cream ice cream, just how it should be: a creamy vanilla base studded with endless chunks of chocolate cookie and that classic cream filling.
Ice cream is surprisingly easy to make. Your active prep time is really only a few minutes.
You only need seven ingredients total: cream, milk, sugar, egg yolks, salt, vanilla bean paste (or vanilla extract), and chopped up Halloween Oreos.
Whisk your egg yolks lightly to break them up, then whisk in half of the sugar (1/4 cup).
In a saucepan, stir together the cream, milk, salt, and remaining sugar (1/4 cup) and put the pan over medium-high heat. What I like about the recipes in this book is that they use 1% or 2% milk to cut the cream, which keeps the ice cream from being too heavy. When the mixture starts to barely simmer, reduce the heat to medium.
Scoop out 1/2 cup of the hot cream mixture and add it slowly to the bowl with the egg yolks, whisking constantly. This introduces heat to the egg yolks slowly so they don’t scramble. Repeat with another 1/2 cup of cream.
Then, add the yolk-and-cream mixture back into the saucepan with the cream mixture slowly, stirring with a heatproof spatula. Cook carefully, stirring constantly, for another 1 to 2 minutes until it coats the back of the spatula and holds a clear path when you run your finger along the spatula.
Immediately remove from the heat and strain through a fine mesh strainer into a clean container. This will remove any bits of uncooked egg that remain and ensure that the custard is smooth.
Place the container into an ice bath and stir occasionally until the mixture is cooled. Then, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
Just before transferring to your ice cream maker, stir in your vanilla bean paste. I also added a few drops of yellow food coloring just to enhance the Halloweeniness. Is that a word? You better believe I just created it. Churn according to your ice cream maker’s instructions, and in the last minute or two of churning, add in your chopped Oreos. Transfer to a freezer container and allow to freeze for at least another 4 hours to firm up.
I served scoops, topped with half an Oreo, in waffle cones that I dipped in melted chocolate and rolled in black sprinkles. Sprinkles are always a good idea. So is ice cream…even in October.
Halloween Cookies & Cream Ice Cream
Slightly adapted from Sweet Cream and Sugar Cones
Yield: About 2.5 pints
- 5 large egg yolks
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 3/4 cups heavy cream
- 3/4 cups 1% or 2% milk
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste (or pure vanilla extract)
- 3-4 drops yellow food coloring (optional)
- 1 1/2 cups chopped Halloween Oreos (in pieces 1/4″ or larger)
- In a medium heatproof bowl, whisk the yolks just to break them up, then whisk in half the sugar (1/4 cup). Set aside.
- In a heavy nonreactive saucepan, stir together the cream, milk, salt, and the remaining sugar (1/4 cup) and put the pan over medium-high heat. When the mixture approaches a bare simmer, reduce the heat to medium.
- Carefully scoop out about 1/2 cup of the hot cream mixture and, whisking the eggs constantly, add the cream to the bowl with the egg yolks. Repeat, adding another 1/2 cup of the hot cream to the bowl with the yolks. Using a heatproof rubber spatula, stir the cream in the saucepan as you slowly pour the egg-and-cream mixture from the bowl into the pan.
- Cook the mixture carefully over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it is thickened, coats the back of a spatula, and holds a clear path when you run your finger across the spatula, 1 to 2 minutes longer.*
- Strain the base through a fine-mesh strainer into a clean container. Set the container into an ice-water bath, wash your spatula, and use it to stir the base occasionally until it is cool. Remove the container rom the ice-water bath, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate the base for at least 2 hours or overnight.
- Just before freezing the base in your ice cream machine, stir in the vanilla bean paste and food coloring.
- Freeze in your ice cream machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions. While the ice cream is churning, put the container you’ll use to store the ice cream into the freezer. Add the chopped cookies in the last minute or so of churning, or fold them in by hand after the ice cream comes out of the machine. Enjoy right away or, for a firmer ice cream, transfer to the chilled container and freeze for at least 4 hours.
*Note: If you “break” the custard at this point—meaning, you accidentally overcook it and it begins to look grainy and separated—you can actually recover it very easily by simply blending the mixture with an immersion blender until it looks smooth again.