Monday, June 29, 2015

Monkey Bread Ice Cream

What a busy month June has been! After wrapping up the school year, we headed north for a long overdue trip to Ohio to visit family. Two days after returning home, we headed out again, this time to South Padre Island. This was our second time to South Padre. Both times we camped in tents at Isla Blanca Park, the absolute cheapest accommodations on the island. While I like hanging out at the beach, my favorite thing to do is to explore the as of yet undeveloped part of the island, driving all the way to the end of the road where you can get a good view of being surrounded by water. I feel uncomfortable going off road at this point because much of the island is privately owned, and, well, we'd be trespassers. But it is beautiful, and you can get a glimpse of what the whole island must have been at one time. If you are ever down there, I also recommend the birding center and Sea Turtle, Inc., a nonprofit that rescues and rehabilitates sea turtles.

South Padre Island
I also dusted off the ice cream maker this month. Making ice cream from scratch takes me back to Mom and Dad making ice cream from fresh milk and cream in one of those old fashioned wood slat ice cream makers. The process seemed almost magic to me as a young kid. I was thrilled when I finally picked up my own ice cream maker a couple years ago so I could continue the tradition of homemade ice cream in the summer with my boys.

Our first batch this summer was basic vanilla bean ice cream. After that quickly disappeared, my oldest son requested monkey bread ice cream. It was enough motivation to get him out of bed on a summer Saturday morning to go to the farmers market to pick up a loaf of our favorite monkey bread from Sol y Luna Bakery. So, yes, I was going to make it happen. I made some tweaks from the original recipe to avoid using corn products, and I am quite pleased with how it turned out. It is a rich, creamy ice cream with yummy chunks of monkey bread through out. You can bet on this becoming a summer favorite.

Monkey Bread Ice Cream

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 4 tsp tapioca flour
  • 1 1/4 cups milk
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 2 TBSP honey
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3 TBSP cream cheese at room temp.
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • monkey bread, torn into small pieces ( I used half of a standard loaf)
Mix tapioca flout with 1/4 cup milk in a small bowl and set aside. 

In a large pan, stir together remaining milk, cream, sugar, honey, and salt. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Whisk in tapioca flour mixture and continue cooking until thickened. Remove from heat.

Add small amount of hot mixture to cream cheese and whisk until smooth. Pour cream cheese mixture into pan with the rest of the hot milk and add vanilla. 

Allow mixture to cool in ice water or over night in your refrigerator. Once cooled, freeze following the directions for your ice cream maker. When the ice cream is nearly finished, add the chunks of monkey bread. My ice cream maker has a hole at the top that allows for adding goodies into the mixture, but if your machine doesn't have this, simply fold the monkey bread pieces into the ice cream when it is finished churning.

Allow ice cream to set in freezer for a couple hours.