When we started My Mexican Shop, there were a number of products I wanted desperately to stock, chief in the list was Mexican drinking chocolate. I absolutely adore it, it's so different from drinking chocolate here and believe you me, you have not tasted a good hot chocolate until you have one made with Mexican Hot chocolate!
The chocolate comes in this darkish brown disks, very granular and extremely hard. It is made with sugar, vanilla, cinnamon and a subtle caramely flavour. Many have tried to replicate the taste using regular chocolate and spices, but it is never the same. Mexican hot chocolate is foamy, warm and delicious and it feels like a mouthful of Mexico every time I have it.
So as soon as I could, I stocked the chocolate, but I was a little bit greedy and with the winter long gone (only in our minds that is) and the thoughts of summer looming in our heads, we found ourselves with a lot of chocolate sitting in the storeroom and no customers wanting to buy it! So I went into a quest to find the best summer recipes for Mexican Chocolate.
This Mexican Chocolate Ice-cream recipe is the first in the series. I love how creamy the ice cream turned out and with my new ice cream maker (picked it up at the summer sales for 40 euro), I am looking forward to a summer filled with ice cream treats! Yes it is more work than just going to the supermarket and buying the tub ready made, but think about the amount of experimental flavours you can try and the satisfaction of making something from scratch! Go on, give it a try!
Melt chocolate & cream together on a bain marie stirring occasionally until the chocolate disks melt completely (you can do this by putting ingredients in a heat proof bowl sitting over a saucepan of simmering water. Make sure the water does not touch the bowl at all, chocolate doesn't like it). Mix both ingredients well and make sure the chocolate is well melted and that there are no lumps. Remove the bowl from the heat and set it aside to cool.
Heat the milk and sugar in a saucepan over medium heat stirring to dissolve the sugar, about 5 minutes or until the milk is warm and the sugar is completely dissolved. Take it off the heat.
In a separate medium bowl, beat the egg yolks with a hand whisk. Gradually add the warm sugary milk to the egg yolks while whisking vigorously. This mix is the custard base for the ice-cream.
Pour the custard back into the milk saucepan and cook it at medium heat stirring constantly until the custards thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon. Don't let it boil or thicken too much and remember to stir constantly so the egg does not stick to the bottom of the pan.
Strain the warm custard into the chocolate & cream mixture using a sieve and stir until smooth. Set the bowl over a large bowl of ice water and continue to stir with a hand whisk to stop the mixture from overcooking and helping the cooling process. Once the mixture bowl stops feeling hot to the touch and there is no steam coming out of the mixture, your chocolate ice cream custard is ready to rest. Take it out of the iced water bowl, cover it with cling film and put it in the fridge for at least 3 hours to chill (better if it rests overnight).
Once the ice-cream custard has rested long enough, all you have to do is put it through your ice cream making machine for 30 to 40 minutes, depending on your ice-cream maker. As you can see from the photos, I transferred the chocolate custard to a pourable jug to make the job easier. When the cycle of the ice-cream maker is finished, transfer the ice cream to a plastic container with a lid and put it in the freezer until you're about to eat it.
This ice-cream is best made the day before. It's rich, creamy and super tasty. As a variation, I tried this recipe with a crumbled salty caramel brownie from The Wild Flour Bakery, an amazing start up bakery that sources as much organic and local ingredients as possible and the most gorgeous looking baked goods I've had in years. The Result: ice cream heaven!