Lychee Ice Cream

So I’m super-late on today’s post… I’ve had the recipe written for a few days, and I was hoping to get everything put together last night. But then I got in to a car accident. Thankfully, I’m okay (and so is the boyfriend and roommate)! The only thing hurt was the boyfriend’s car. Because of all the drama and accident follow-up, I’ve been markedly distracted today. But now it’s time to get back on track!

Remember two weeks ago when I posted about the Strawberry-Rhubarb Ice Cream? Well, if you don’t, I was inspired to buy the ice cream maker attachment to my Kitchenaid because of a craving for lychee ice cream. But I had leftover rhubarb and couldn’t find any lychees in DC, so I went ahead with an alternate plan. Well, last weekend, I finally made it out to the Asian grocery and picked up about 4 pounds of lychees!

With lychees in hand, I decided to get cooking on my ice cream! The lychee ice cream uses the same custard base as the strawberry-rhubarb ice cream, although it is slightly sweeter to account for less sugar in the lychee puree. I also decided (at the last minute) to strain the ice cream mixture to ensure a smooth and creamy frozen end product! And the resulting ice cream is absolutely amazing!

Click below for the recipe! Have a question? Feel free to ask in the comments below! And thanks for reading! 🙂

Lychee Ice Cream

Yield: Approximately 2 quarts

Begin by assembling your ingredients.

You are going to need:

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 5 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 pounds fresh lychees (about 1 pound peeled and stoned)
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice (about 1 lime)

You are also going to need:

  • Wire whisk
  • Medium sized bowl
  • Large sized bowl
  • Medium sauce pan
  • Wooden spoon
  • Mesh strainer
  • Blender or food processor
  • Ice cream maker
  • Plastic freezer-safe container

First, make the ice cream base. (You want to start this the night before because you will need to fully chill the ice cream mixture before freezing it.)

Place the egg yolks in to a medium bowl. Add one 1/4-cup of the sugar, and whisk it in to the egg yolks.

In a medium saucepan, combine the milk and cream. Heat until just below simmering, when little bubbles begin to form along the sides of the pan. Remove from the heat.

Next, temper the egg yolks. (This is done to make sure that the egg yolks do not cook and curdle in the ice cream base.) Slowly, add about 1/2-cup of the hot milk to the egg yolks, whisking constantly.

Add the egg yolks, whisking slowly, back in to the cream and milk mixture. Heat the mixture, being careful not to boil, until it begins to thicken into a custard.

To test the custard for done-ness, dip the back of the spoon in to the mixture, and run your finger along the liquid. If the line holds, the custard is done.

Remove the custard from the heat. Pour the custard through a mesh strainer set over a large bowl. The mesh strainer will catch any stray pieces of cooked egg.

Let the custard mixture cool for about one hour at room temperature, stirring occasionally.

While the custard mixture is cooling, peel and stone the lychees if you haven’t already done so.

Quick tip: To peel and stone the lychees, use a knife (or your fingers) to remove the stem from the top of the fruit. Pull the peel back slightly, and push the lychee out from the peel. Use a knife to remove the flesh from the pit. But be careful not to cut the pit because it is toxic!

Then, puree the lychees, brown sugar, salt, vanilla, and lime juice in a blender or food processor.

Once the custard is cool, mix in the pureed lychee mixture. Cover the ice cream mixture, and refrigerate until completely cold, at least 8 hours or preferably overnight.

The next day, remove the ice cream mixture from the refrigerator. Strain the mixture to remove any stray lychee pulp, and freeze according to your ice cream maker’s instructions.

(I divided the mixture in to two batches, and froze them separately to make sure it would all fit in my ice cream maker. This took an extra night of work but ended up worth it because the consistency came out much better with the small batches.)

When your ice cream maker is done churning, scrape the ice cream in to a freezer-safe plastic container. (The ice cream will be at a soft-serve consistency.) Freeze for a few hours to harden the ice cream.

Quick tip: do not freeze your ice cream in the bowl of your ice cream maker. Serving it directly from the ice cream maker bowl will likely scratch and damage the bowl. Always transfer the ice cream to a freezer-safe container, and then wash the ice cream maker bowl in warm (not hot!) soapy water. Never place the bowl in the dishwasher!

To serve, remove the ice cream from the freezer, and let warm slightly at room temperature, for about 10 minutes.

Enjoy! 😀


4 thoughts on “Lychee Ice Cream

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