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Holiday Twists: Pumpkin-Coconut Ice Cream

November 03, 2006

Pumpkin.jpg

One of my favorite things to do this time of year is to dream up new ways to use the obligatory foods of the holiday season. There's something gratifying and even transgressive in departing from the traditional recipes and finding new ways to prepare pumpkin, squash, sweet potatoes, bread stuffing and cranberries.

I neglect to mention turkey, as I am one of those people who think turkey's only redeeming service is to offer up giblets and a warm gaping cavity to the creation of excellent stuffing.

My family is sharply divided over the giblet question; I mark the good Thanksgivings by the happy occasions when my grandmother is fully in charge and the giblets are safely nestled in a stuffing of excellent character. Otherwise, turkey - eh. It's just so damn big. If a leg of lamb had giblets and a cavity for stuffing, I'd be having that every year instead.

Pumpkin is easier. I like pumpkin. It's orange and rich and good for you. Last year I discovered that the trick to really good pumpkin pie is to use a thick graham cracker crust. The pumpkin filling soaks in halfway and you end up with a three-layer pie that is suffused with the taste of sugar, butter, graham crackers and pumpkin. It's the best.

Pumpkin.jpg

But that's stilll pumpkin pie. Very traditional. Here's another way to use up all the innards of your Halloween pumpkins - roasted, pureed and stored in your freezer in neat little 1-cup baggies. (Right? Of course right.)

This ice cream is a rich, sweet way to get your pumpkin without making a pie. The egg yolks make it velvety smooth and the cream of coconut balances the earthy pumpkin with a tropical sweetness. To keep things fairly traditional, taste-wise, serve with spicy gingersnaps at the end of a Thanksgiving meal. Or twist it up even more and serve in small scoops side by side with a sage and gin sorbet, garnished with a twist of lime!

Pumpkin.jpg

Pumpkin-Coconut Ice Cream

4 egg yolks
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1 cup pumpkin puree
1 can coconut cream (not coconut milk - Coco Lopez, found with the drink mixers)
1 cup cream
1 cup half and half (or whole milk)

Whisk the egg yolks in a medium saucepan with sugar, salt and spices. Whip them until yellow and lightened in texture and volume. Whisk in the pumpkin.

Stir in the can of Coco Lopez. Add to the yolks. Whisk thoroughly then whisk in cream and half/half.

Put over medium low heat and cook, stirring constantly, for 10-15 minutes. Do not let it boil. Stir until temperature is 175-180ºF. Remove from heat and strain into a bowl.

Refrigerate for four hours or overnight, then freeze in your ice cream maker. Store for up to two weeks, tightly covered with a double layer of plastic wrap or foil underneath the lid of the container.

Posted by Faith at 3 November 2006

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Comments

I'm with you on the turkey--it's too big! I haven't made one in years, but my boyfriend is a turkey lover and has volunteered to roast all turkeys in perpetuity.

Posted by: lucette at November 6, 2006 08:49 PM

OH, FAITH. You must have never had Aaron's grilled (and brined) turkey. You would sing a different Turkey Tune if you had.

Posted by: Kim at November 7, 2006 12:40 AM

Well, we had a smoked and a regular turkey on Thanksgiving, both of which were good. Also, my grandma put giblets in all of the stuffing! I was so happy.

Kim, I wish I could try Aaron's turkey...

Posted by: faith [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 7, 2006 10:29 AM

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