Old-fashioned homemade ice cream can be made in an older hand-cranked churn or in a modern electric model. Most hand-cranked churns work in the same way, but on an electric model you will need to consult your user's manual because there is variance in operation. Homemade ice cream is a memory-maker for family and friends during outdoor barbecues, picnics or simply on a hot summer day.
Equipment and Ingredients
To make traditional homemade vanilla ice cream in a manual churn, you will need a large mixing bowl, a long-handled spoon, ice and rock salt. For an electric model, freeze the inner tub of the churn for up to 48 hours before making the ice cream. The ingredients for either method are the same; you will need cream or half-and-half, eggs and flavorings.
Mixing the Vanilla Mixture
In a large bowl, mix 2 cups heavy cream, 1/2 cup sugar, 4 egg yolks, 2 to 3 tsp. pure vanilla and 1/4 tsp. salt until well-blended. If the use of raw eggs is a problem, heat the mixture over medium heat for 10 minutes. Refrigerate this mixture until cold, usually about a half hour.
Prepare the Freezer
Layer ice and salt between the outer and inner containers of a manual ice cream churn. If you are using an electric model, set the machine up according to the manufacturer's instructions. Pour the cream mixture into the center container and put the lid of the churn into place.
Make the Ice Cream
Begin turning the crank on a manual churn or turn on the electric machine. Manual churns are turned until the ice cream becomes too thick to stir with the handle. Most electric models have a preset time listed in the recipe book. Once the ice cream has been churned, remove the cover of the churn.
When the churn is first opened, the ice cream will be at a slightly soft stage. This is the time to stir in any additional ingredients, such as crumbled cookies, crumbled candy bars or sauces.
Ripen the Ice Cream
If you like your ice cream more solid than soft-churned, place the inner basket of the churn into the freezer to allow the ice cream to ripen and harden. This will take approximately 1 hour. If you are using a manual churn, you can also place fresh ice between the inner and outer containers and ripen the ice cream so it can be served straight from the churn.