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Salted Caramel Ice Cream

November 10, 2009

Grandma Mary keeping a close watch on four of her grandchildren.

There’s really no polite way to put this, so I’ll just come right out with it–my Grandma Mary (my paternal grandmother) was a terrible cook. Rotten. During my teenage years, my grandparents moved to the same town as us, and that meant holiday dinners at their house. Without fail, the Tuesday or so before Thanksgiving Thursday, my dad would look at his watch and declare, “Well, mom just put the green beans on the burner.” Green bean soup, we called it. And in all honestly, it was the only thing edible on the holiday table.

In her defense, there were a couple of recipes she did exceptionally well, which make me think of her memory whenever I make them. One is for caramel ice cream. It’s taken from a recipe passed down to her by her own mother, Fey, my great-grandmother known as Gram.

You might find it funny to be posting a recipe for ice cream in November. But let me tell you, you’ll think nothing of it when you’ve got a great heaping spoonful of this Salted Caramel Ice Cream sitting on top of a piping hot slice of pecan pie in a couple of weeks. No sir. The salt was my addition, as I think salt and caramel go together like ebony and ivory. Sweet harmony.


Gram with my older sister and brother.

Salted Caramel Ice Cream

•    3 T flour
•    ½ cup white sugar
•    ½ cup brown sugar
•    3 eggs
•    2 quarts milk
•    1 can of evaporated milk
•    1 tsp vanilla extract
•    A few pinches of high-quality sea salt

Scald two quarts of milk (do not boil) add evaporated milk. Combine flour, white sugar, 3 egg yolks with some of the milk to make a paste mixture. Then put back in the scalded milk. Set aside.

Take the brown sugar and melt in a skillet, add salt while melting the brown sugar, then combine with the hot milk mixture.

Beat 3 egg whites until stiff and add vanilla extract. Fold the egg whites into the milk mixture and let cool.

Transfer the mixture to an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions.