Since it is getting warmer now in the southern hemisphere, ice cream sounds like a good idea to escape from the heat. Or, I am just making up an excuse to make it. I don’t have an ice cream maker, and I really wish if I had it because it would make my life easier. I don’t have a food processor or hand-mixer either, so my ice cream was truly hand-made and it turned out just fine.
I originally wanted to make mochi ice cream, which is ice cream covered by a layer of sticky rice cake (mochi). The theme was somewhat Japanese, so I decided the flavor of the ice cream would be matcha (抹茶; powder green tea). I bought all ingredients I needed for the ice cream and the mochi. Since freezing the ice cream would take some time, I started making the ice cream on Saturday, and planned to do the mochi on Sunday. Everything was fine until I was stirring the flour mixture for the mochi. Somehow I suspected something went wrong, and the rice flour was the main culprit. I asked myself whether I got the right rice flour. For the mochi, I should use glutinous rice flour to get that sticky, chewy texture. When I turned to the flour package I bought, my nightmare turned into reality. There was no ‘glutinous’ written on the package, only ‘rice flour.’ Sad… I was too lazy to step out to get the correct ingredient, so I just stopped right there. I’ll leave my mochi ice cream project for next week.
For the ice cream, do give it a try because it was quick and easy to make. Just a couple of ingredients, and voilà, you’ll have sweet and creamy matcha ice cream. You just have to be diligent to break the ice crystals if you are not using ice maker. I wasn’t looking for perfection on the texture, so I only stirred the mixture once after it was frozen.
Matcha Ice Cream
(yields about 8 scoops)
- 1 cup (300 mL) of heavy cream
- 1 cup (300 mL) of whole milk
- 1/2 cup of sugar
- 3 tbp of matcha (I used Ito-en matcha powder. Use better quality if you can)
- pinch of salt
- Mix all ingredients in a pot or sauce pan.
- Heat the mixture until it comes to a full boil, and whisk until foamy.
- Remove from heat.
- I immediately chill the mixture using ice-water bath with some salt in the bath to lower the temperature.
- When the mixture is cooled down, transfer to a container and freeze it.
- After an hour or so (when it starts to freeze around the edges), use a fork/ whisk to stir the ice cream. Put it back into the freezer.
- Check the mixture again after 30 min – 1 hour, and stir vigorously to break the ice crystals. The more often you repeat the steps, the finer the texture of the ice cream. You can also use a hand mixer/ food processor to break the ice crystals. I just did it once, but the I considered the texture was sufficiently creamy.
- After 3 hours, the ice cream is ready to serve. Take it out from the freezer and let it sit for 5-10 minutes before serving.