Double Chocolate Ice Cream with Cocoa Nib and Pistachio Praline Crumble

Well, that is  delicious mouthful.

There is even more—the “double chocolate” requires a chocolate ganache swirled in the already chocolatey ice cream.

This is the sixth part of a series documenting our Chocolate Cooking Class with Chef Sarah Leavell of The Canebrake.

Double Chocolate Ice Cream with Cocoa Nib and Pistachio Praline Crumble was the first course of what happened to be a two course dessert tasting after our Cocoa-Chili Rubbed Steak Sandwiches.     (Had we consumed enough chocolate yet?   Almost.)

This is a basic chocolate ice cream recipe but it is layered with rich chocolate ganache swirls.     Again, Chef Sarah encouraged the class to be creative and add chopped nuts, fruit, coconut or even butterscotch swirls.    When making a chocolate ice cream, Chef Sarah warns against adding cocoa powder;  it will make the ice cream grainy.

The recipe makes 1 1/2 quarts so it is perfect if you have a two quart ice cream maker.

Double Chocolate Ice Cream
From Chef Sara Leavell of The Canebrake

3 c. heavy cream
1 c. whole milk
3 oz. finely chopped dark chocolate
pinch of salt
8 egg yolks
3/4 c. sugar

In a large, heavy saucepan, combine the cream, milk, chocolate, and salt over medium heat and bring to a simmer.   Stir to make sure chocolate is completely melted.

In a large bowl, combine the egg yolks and sugar and whisk to combine.

Ladle 1/2 c. of the hot cream mixture into the eggs and whisk well to combine.   Stir the egg mixture into the hot cream mixture and cook over low heat, stirring constantly to prevent sticking.    Cook until thick enough to coate the back of a spoon, 3-5 minutes.

Place custard into a large clean bowl and cover loosely with plastic wrap.    Refrigerate until well chilled, at least 3 hours.

Pour custard into the bowl of an ice cream maker.   Freeze according to manufacturer’s instructions.

Place 1/3 of the frozen ice cream into an airtight container.   Spread a thin layer of the chocolate ganache(see recipe below) over the surface of the ice cream.   Repeat the two previous  steps, layering the ganache and ice cream.   Freeze until ready to eat.

Chocolate Ganache
This is the ultimate fudge sauce.   You can adjust the thickness by adding more cream as desired.  

Makes 1 cup.

4 oz. chopped dark chocolate
1/2 c. heavy cream

Place the chocolate and cream in a small bowl.   Place the bowl over a saucepan of barely simmering water to make a double boiler.   When the chocolate is melted, stir to combine.

The finished sauce will be glossy and smooth.

So I am wondering if you have a Cuisinart ice cream maker if you couldn’t drizzle some of the ganache in at the last minute of freezing to make the swirl.   ????

I am going to try it.

Now for the pièce de résistance—the Cocoa Nib and Pistachio Praline to either crumble on top of the ice cream before serving or as Chef Sarah did, place on the serving dish before plating.

Cocao nibs are roasted husked cocoa beans that have been broken into bits.    These nibs are used to add a subtle chocolate flavor to baked goods.   They can be found in some specialty grocery stores and online.

Cacao nibs  (Image from internet.)

Cacao nibs
(Image from internet.)

According to Chef Sarah, “This praline is great served with ice cream or sprinkle it over a frosted chocolate cake as a garnish.”


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Cocoa Nib and Pistachio Praline
From Chef Sara Leavell of The Canebrake

Makes 3 cups

1 c. sugar
1/2 c. light corn syrup
2 T. brown sugar
2 T. unsalted butter
1/2 t. sea salt
1/2 c. crushed cocoa nibs
1 c. chopped toasted pistachios

Line an 18 x 12 baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.

Place the sugar, corn syrup, brown sugar, butter and salt into a heavy bottomed pot.   Bring mixture to a boil and continue cooking until the sugar browns and reaches 340  degrees Fahrenheit on a candy thermometer.

Immediately stir in the cocoa nibs and pistachios using a wood spoon.

Spread the mixture onto the prepared pan while still hot.

Allow to cool to room temperature.    When cool and hard, break into irregular shards.   Place the shards in a food processor and pulse just until mixture is broken into fine chunks.

Stor in an airtight container in a single layer.

Chef Sarah gave us some cocoa nibs to chew on and sample.    I kind of liked the nuttiness.   She also gave us some great tips:

  • Add cocao nibs to chocolate chip cookies.
  • Nibs are good for savory dishes.
  • Add to a spinach salad with strawberries with a balsamic dressing.

I need to get some cocoa nibs as well as some of the dark chocolate with quinoa.

As stated earlier, this was the first course of our “dessert course” after our Cocoa and Chile Rubbed Steak sandwiches.

With what did Chef Sarah top off our chocolate adventure?

Chocolate Spaetzle with Butterscotch Sauce

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