Learn How To Make Smoked Bourbon Vanilla Ice Cream Courtesy Of #HomeIsTheKey

I recently had the opportunity to flex my very limited cooking skills at Sur La Table as part of an “Advanced Skills for Adventurous Cooks” class held by Habitat For Humanity’s Home Is The Key program. The menu for the class boasted a handful of intricate eats, including salt block scallops with classic beurre blanc and a beluga lentil sandal with preserved lemon vinaigrette.

Given that I’m in the business of all things Lushworthy, one of my favorites from the evening was the smoked bourbon vanilla ice cream. It was so rich and surprisingly easy to make. In case you’re interested in making your own batch of smoked bourbon vanilla ice cream, which I highly suggest, I’ve listed the full recipe below.

Also, be sure to share the #HomeIsTheKey hashtag on social media. Every time the hashtag is used (up until April 30), Nissan will donate $1 to Habitat For Humanity’s Home Is The Key program. You can also make your own donation, and learn more about Home Is The Key by visiting Habitat.org


2 Cups Heavy Whipping Cream, Divided
Wood Chips For Smoking
1 Cup Whole Milk
3/4 Cup Granulated Sugar
1/2 Teaspoon Sea Salt
6 Large Egg Yolks
1 Teaspoon Vanilla Bean Paste
2 Tablespoons Bourbon


Set up and pre-chill ice cream maker. Place a 1-quart, freezer-safe container with a tight fitting lid in the freezer to chill. Prepare an ice bath.

To smoke the cream: Pour 1 cup of the heavy cream into a small bowl. Load a smoking gun with wood chips, light the gun, and direct the tube into the bowl. Cover with plastic wrap to trap the smoke. Fill the bowl with smoke and turn off the gun; remove the tube, resealing with the plastic wrap. Allow the cream to absorb the smoke for about 15 minutes.

To prepare the ice cream: Combine the smoked and remaining heavy cream, milk, granulated sugar, and salt in a medium saucepan. Place over medium heat, bring just to simmer, and remove from heat.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk the egg yolks until they lighten in color. Temper the yolks by slowly adding the warm cream mixture to the yolks, one ladle at a time, whisking continuously. When about a third of the cream mixture has been added to the yolks, pour the warmed yolk mixture back into the saucepan with the rest of the cream and return to the stove over medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens and reaches 175 F to 180 F on an instant-read thermometer, about 5 minutes. Do not allow the mixture to boil.

Strain the custard through a fine-mesh strainer into a clean medium bowl and place custard over an ice bath, or refrigerate, until cold. Whisk in the vanilla paste and bourbon. Transfer custard to an ice cream maker and churn according to the manufacturers’ instructions. Enjoy right away or transfer to a freezer-safe container to chill until firm.

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