Espresso Ice Cream

I was inspired to make espresso ice cream after having some fantastic espresso gelato from a local pizza bar. This recipe is adapted from one of my favorite chefs, Ina Garten (aka The Barefoot Contessa) and there are two things that make this ice cream utterly delicious. One is the coffee liqueur (I made my own but you can use Kahlua), and the second thing is dark chocolate-covered espresso beans. (Did I have you at dark chocolate?) These two ingredients add such a fabulous dept of flavor to the ice cream. It’s just so decadent!
Stuff You'll Need:
3 cups half-and-half
6 extra-large egg yolks
2/3 cup sugar
Pinch salt
2 1/2 instant espresso (Medaglia D' Oro Instant Espresso)
1 tablespoon coffee liqueur (I used my own but Kahlua works fine)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
4 ounces dark chocolate-covered espresso beans (chopped).
Directions: Heat the half-and-half until it forms bubbles around the edge of the pan and steam starts to rise. Meanwhile, in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the egg yolks, sugar, and salt until mixed. Slowly add the hot half-and-half until combined. Wipe out the pan and pour the mixture back into the clean pan. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, for 5 to 10 minutes, until it's thickened and the cream coats the back of the spoon. Pour the cream through a fine-meshed sieve into a bowl. Add the instant espresso, coffee liqueur, and vanilla and refrigerate until completely chilled. Pour the espresso cream into an ice-cream freezer and freeze according to the manufacturer's directions. Mix in the chopped espresso beans, spoon into a container, and allow to freeze for a few hours. **Soften slightly before serving.**

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