Kids in the Kitchen: Peppermint Ice Cream with Chocolate Chips

There are kitchen tasks for kids of every age, and it is fun to work together; the group effort is rewarded by good things to eat.

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Makes a generous quart

Use peppermint or spearmint to make this ice cream. Peppermint is stronger, spearmint milder and sweeter; you will need a few more sprigs if you use spearmint. If you can’t find chocolate mini-morsels, finely chop semisweet chocolate in a food processor or with a knife.

  • 2 cups whipping cream
  • 1 cup milk
  • 10 sprigs peppermint
  • 7/8 cup sugar
  • 3 extra-large egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup semisweet chocolate mini-morsels

1. In a heavy-bottomed nonreactive pan, combine the cream and milk. Add the mint sprigs and sugar and stir well. Place the pan over medium heat and stir occasionally until very hot but not simmering. Turn heat to very low and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 to 15 minutes.

2. Remove the pan from the heat. Carefully taste the cream mixture. If the mint flavor is not strong enough, add a few more sprigs and stir well. Let the mixture steep 15 to 20 minutes longer.

3. Lightly beat the egg yolks in a small bowl. Add about 1/2 cup of the hot cream mixture to the yolks and whisk well. Return the cream and egg mixture to the pan and whisk well. Cook over low to medium heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture coats a spoon lightly.

4. Pour the custard through a strainer into a bowl, pressing the leaves to extract their flavor. Let the custard cool a bit and then refrigerate until thoroughly chilled.

5. Transfer the chilled custard to the container of an ice-cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions. About halfway through the freezing time, add the chocolate mini-morsels.

6. Store the finished ice cream in the freezer until ready to serve; garnish with fresh mint sprigs.

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