I think I’ve mentioned that I’ve been making a lot of ice cream lately – it is summer after all. I had some leftover bananas the other day but wasn’t in the mood for banana bread, muffins, or cupcakes (my usual go-tos when I need to use up bananas), so I decided to make ice cream. I love banana ice cream, but I wanted a little something different. I had some great big salty cashews on-hand and decided they’d make the perfect edition to the sweet creamy banana ice cream. If you, like my “I don’t like nuts in my ice cream friend,” don’t like nuts in your ice cream, skip the cashews and you’ll have a delicious simple banana ice cream*.
- 2 Cups Whole Milk
- 1.25 Cups Heavy Cream
- 2/3 Cup Sugar
- 2 Very Ripe Bananas
- 2TBS. Light Corn Syrup
- 1 Heaping TBS. Corn Starch
- 1 Vanilla Bean (split lengthwise)**
- 1 Cup Lightly Salted Cashews – chopped
- Extra Whole Cashews for garnish
*If you are not using cashews, add about 1/8 tsp. fine sea salt. **Substitute 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
Combine cornstarch, sugar and salt in a medium mixing bowl. Add enough milk to dissolve all of the dry ingredients and make a slurry. Add the remaining milk, cream, vanilla bean (scrape seeds into milk mixture and drop in bean pod) and corn syrup to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Boil for 4 minutes (no more, no less). Remove from heat and add the cornstarch mixture. Return to heat and bring back to a boil, stirring constantly, until sugar is dissolved and mixture has thickened slightly. Remove vanilla bean pod. Puree the bananas in a blender or food processor. Add the pureed bananas to the hot milk/cream mixture. Pour mixture into a gallon sized ziplock bag, seal, and place in an ice bath – chill until completely chilled (at least 30 minutes). Pour the chilled mixture into the canister of an ice cream maker and process until thick and creamy. When ice cream has reached desired consistency (about 15-25 minutes for most ice cream makers) add chopped cashews and allow to mix until incorporated. Transfer ice cream to an airtight storage container, cover with a layer of parchment paper, cover, and freeze until firm – about 4 hours. Garnish with whole cashews if desired.