Homemade Ice Cream - Chocolate 7 Heaven

Deeply delicious dark chocolate, melt in the mouth milk chocolate and wickedly whipped white chocolate, the sensuous taste of good quality chocolate is one of life's small pleasures. Chocolate, or the best quality chocolate, is a taste to be savoured, a pleasure to be enjoyed slowly, lingered over on your own or with a special person. My personal favourite is dark chocolate, 85% cocoa solids from a well known organic brand which I dare not mention, straight up or with a twist of ginger or gold leaf. Fantastic to eat a square at a time or for an extra special treat to leave on the tongue whilst taking a sip of malt whisky. Heavenly.

Turning chocolate in to ice cream should be straight forward but for some reason it isn't. It is incredibly difficult to get that rich chocolate taste in your homemade ice cream. For that reason I often use the same simple recipe as a base to create many different chocolate ice creams. In this article I show you a simple but gorgeous recipe that is easy to make and with just a few tweaks can easily be turned in to seven heavenly ice cream desserts.

Below is the base recipe which is absolutely delicious in it's own right. Following on from this are the brief notes to create 6 different chocolate ice creams, one for each day of the week. I hope that you enjoy them all.

Recipe for Chocolate Ice Cream

450ml Double Cream

150ml Full Fat Milk

1 Vanilla Pod

4 Large Egg Yolks

100g Fine Brown Sugar

150g Dark Chocolate (good quality with a minimum of 70% Cocoa)

1 tablespoon Cocoa Powder

Scrape the seeds from the vanilla pod in to the milk and cream, add half the sugar and heat until the liquid almost reaches boiling point, Do not let it boil. Take off the heat and let it cool.

Mix the remaining sugar in to the egg yolks until all the sugar crystals have dissolved. Reheat the cream and add the egg yolks and sugar heating gently over a low heat for about ten minutes until the liquid has thickened and easily coats the back of a spoon.

Break the chocolate in to chunks in a bowl, add the cocoa powder and place the bowl over a saucepan of boiling water until the chocolate has completely melted.

Add the chocolate to the cream and pour in to your Ice Cream Maker, churning as per the manufacturer's instructions. Place in the freezer and eat within 1 week.

To make Double Chocolate Chip

Increase the amount of dark chocolate by 150g. Place the extra chocolate on your kitchen counter between two sheets of clingfilm and hit with a rolling pin to create shards of chocolate. Tip these in to your ice cream maker ten minutes before the end of the cycle.

To make Triple Chocolate

Increase the amount of chocolate in the basic recipe by 75g of dark chocolate and 75g of good quality white chocolate. Follow the instructions as per the Double Chocolate Chip.

To make La Mumba

Add 25ml of brandy to your melted chocolate before pouring it in to the cream

To make Boozy Chocolate Orange

Add 25ml of orange liqueur and a tablespoon of juice from a freshly squeezed orange to your melted chocolate before pouring in to the cream.

To make Silky Milky

Instead of using 150g of dark chocolate use 50g of dark chocolate and 100g of milk chocolate. Add a couple of drops of vanilla essence to the melted chocolate before pouring it in to the cream

To make ChocaMocha

When making the basic ice cream include a cup of strong black coffee, very very strong black coffee. Rather than adding the melted chocolate to the cream at the beginning of the process add the melted chocolate towards the end of the ice cream maker cycle to make a rippled effect.