Serious Eats: Recipes

Scooped: Smoked Chocolate and Tequila Ice Cream

Note: I scream you scream we all scream for...this column! You already know Max Falkowitz from his spice column here—he's joined forces with Ethan Frisch of the Guerrilla Ice Cream cart, a mobile NYC-based ice cream business, to create frozen dessert recipes for us every week through the end of the summer. And now, we pass the spoon to Ethan and Max! —The Mgmt.

[Photograph: Robyn Lee]

What could be better than chocolate, tequila and ice cream on a hot August afternoon? So why not put them all together in one amazing ice cream concoction? Funny you should ask, because that's exactly what we did.

Homemade chocolate ice cream is unlike anything you'll find in a supermarket freezer. The texture is incredibly silky and smooth, and high-quality chocolate gives the ice cream an incredible depth of flavor. For this (and other) chocolate ice cream recipes, we recommend Trader Joe's 72% Belgian Chocolate, which comes in big 17-ounce bars—simply saw off the amount you need, and store the rest in an airtight plastic bag in the fridge until your next ice cream or baking extravaganza. It has a great dark, nutty flavor that translates well in ice cream form, as well as other desserts and baked goods.

For this recipe, we used a good tequila reposado, and as in all recipes involving alcohol as flavoring, the better the tequila, the better the ice cream. We liked its slightly smoky and herbaceous flavors which paired well with chocolate's natural bitterness. To enhance its smokiness, we steeped the ice cream base with black cardamom along with some other spices that are surprisingly subtle in the end product.

Raw sugar and caramelized honey add another layer of complexity and nuance to the chocolate. If tequila isn't your cup of tea, so to speak, an equal quantity of dark rum, scotch or bourbon would work very nicely as well. Do be warned that there's a fair amount of alcohol in this ice cream, so it'll melt quickly once out of the freezer. If it does, grabbing a straw and drinking it like a milkshake wouldn't be the worst thing you could do.

About the authors:

Ethan Frisch is the chef and co-mastermind behind Guerrilla Ice Cream, the only ice cream company that looks to international political movements for inspiration and donates all of its profits. He's traveled around the world (30 countries, 5 continents) and worked as a pastry chef and line cook in some of NYC's great (and not so great) restaurants. He lives above a tofu factory in Manhattan's Chinatown.

Max Falkowitz writes Serious Eats' weekly Spice Hunting column. He's a proud native of Queens, New York, will do just about anything for a good cup of tea, and enjoys long walks down the aisles of Chinese groceries.

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