Unlucky thirteen. Actually, thirteen is very lucky for your mouth in this ice cream.
Before we get too far into this let me address one important issue - use of vanilla beans. This fellow is not abandoning his philosophy that vanilla extract is all that is necessary for great vanilla ice cream. If you recall from one of my earliest posts, I talked about the value of vanilla extract and how it is the real flavoring behind nearly every vanilla ice cream you will ever eat. I stand by that statement. There really isn't a need to ever use vanilla beans when making ice cream; however, I had some sitting around, so I put them to work.
This recipe is an adaptation from Ann Amernick's "The Art of Dessert." With the exception of the eggs and flavorings, Ms. Amernick's recipe uses the base that I favor the most - 2 cups of milk and cream and 3/4 cup of sugar. When it comes to eggs, she asks for 225 grams of egg yolks, which she says is 11 - 12 eggs. In order to get there, I needed 13 yolks. I suggest you use the same amount and forget about the scale. There is no reason to really measure to the gram. She is pastry chef and is used to working in metric volumes because baking is science and requires a degree of precision that is not necessary in ice cream. So please use your baker's dozen of egg yolks and enjoy the most unctuous of vanilla ice cream.
Her book is fantastic, Ms. Amernick is certainly an artisan to be admired. I made the complete recipe for the Apple Marmalade Sandwiches with Cranberry Coulis and Vanilla Caramel Ice Cream. The results were well received, although Mrs. Fellow thought it too orangey for her taste. I would make it again in a second. Unfortunately, something about her methodology for making ice cream prevented me from completely following her recipe.
Her recipe calls for the cream and milk to be brought to a boil, then removed from the heat. The eggs are tempered and whisked into the milk and cream. From what I have read and my own experiences, when the milk and cream comes to a boil, the fat separates from the liquid and cannot be reincorporated. The result is bad. So I opted to follow my usual method of heating.
I won't go into the details of this recipe too much. the ingredient list is as follows:
2 cups whole milk
2 cups cream
13 egg yolks
3/4 cup of sugar
1 vanilla bean
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
If you read my blog regularly, than you know how to make custard. If not, refer to my vanilla ice cream post. The main difference in the methodology is that the vanilla bean is split and scraped, then added to the milk and cream. Leave the bean in the ice cream until it is strained through the sieve.