Salted Caramel Ice Cream Milkshakes

 

This past Christmas, “Santa” brought my 3-1/2-year-old twins a battery-operated blender (apparently fashioned by his elves at Amazon.com). Bright yellow with a plastic “blade,” it whirred along excitedly when I added some dried beans to the container – whap! whap! whap! And for a few days this entertained my kids with occasional bursts of loud fun (and beans ending up in the strangest places.) About a week ago, I decided it was time to take the dried-bean training wheels off the blender and put it to work in the kitchen: it was time for milkshakes! We set the blender on the floor. I pulled out some salted caramel ice cream I had in the freezer, some milk and some breakable Illy espresso cups I’d had for years thinking they’d be perfect for when we had children (until I actually had children, saw how often their cups plunged to the floor, and decided to let the cups sit in the cabinet for a few more years). Together Walker, Addie and I scooped the ice cream, poured the milk, put on the lid, and then turned on the little plastic blender-that-could. It chugged and struggled and whirred and in a few moments the lumps of ice cream began to slowly unmoor from the sides of the container. Without a blade, the “blade” swished the ice cream until it broke down and the blender filled up with slushy foam. It never occurred to me that you could make a milkshake without intensely blending the ingredients. But it turns out that all you really need to do is emulsify the milk and ice cream until they achieve a texture that’s not quite milky and not quite solid but “ploppy” as I explained to my kids. The milkshakes have since become a nightly ritual (which means, for me, a 7 pm milkshake aperitif has replaced the Lillet or scotch -- but things could be worse). The Salted Caramel Ice Cream portion of the recipe is adapted from Nicole Kaplan at Eleven Madison Park in New York City; it originally appeared in the New York Times on October 8, 2006 in an article by Christine Muhlke.

What you will need

3/4 cup plus 1/2 cup sugar

2 teaspoons light corn syrup

2 cups whole cream, preferably organic

2 cups whole milk, plus more to blend the milkshakes

10 egg yolks

1/2 teaspoon fleur de sel, plus more for serving

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