My in-laws stepped up big though, and got me a new ice cream book. It's written by the guys from Humphrey Slocumbe, in San Francisco. Whenever I admit to the possibility of moving to the West Coast, it's places like this that draw me. For some reason, there seem to be a lot more little hole-in-the-wall ice cream places in California than here in DC.
With friends coming to visit, I figured this was a good excuse to make something a little more involved than my usual cholate hazelnut (as incredible as it is). Flipping through the book, I found a recipe for a bourbon caramel sauce, that only needed a couple ingredients and sounded really easy. Plus, it was a bourbon caramel sauce. That's all upside.
Here's the recipe:
- Put some sugar and water in a pot
- Turn up the heat, and leave it alone. When it starts to caramelize, add the bourbon.
Well.. they weren't, and they didn't. My first two tries turned into a pot full of crystallized sugar. I would have taken pictures, but it was too disheartening. Thanks to a Good Eats clip, Katie's urging, and my innate stubbornness, I rallied for a third attempt, and victory was mine.
Well, victory may be too strong a word.
I was looking at a half-inch thick block of boubon-caramel rock candy, smeared out on my silpat baking sheet. At that point, I called a truce with chemistry, covered the candy with some plastic wrap, and went to bed.
But.. by some weird fluke of chemistry, the little chunks of bourbon-caramel goodness kind of melted, resulting in this incredible caramel flavored ice cream (the bourbon gets a little lost), with soft little nuggets of bourbon-caramel candy inside.