September 01, 2013


Ice Cream (custard based) ›

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Custard-based Ice Cream (Pistachio or Hazelnut)

Elegant, rich and smooth, custard-based ice cream is a classic. Here we’ve included a little skimmed milk powder which contributes to an even smoother, almost mousse-like texture. Perfect eaten on its own in a cone or sprinkled with a few chopped nuts, for crunch. The recipe and pictures are by Littleloaf for WhyNut.


400ml full fat milk
200ml double cream
3 tbsp skimmed milk powder
Pinch salt
115g caster sugar, divided
4 large free range egg yolks
Pinch salt
70 – 90g WhyNut pistachio or hazelnut paste


  • Create an ice bath by adding ice cubes to a dish of water or sink big enough to accommodate the medium bowl, below.
  • In a saucepan, warm the milk, cream, skimmed milk powder, salt and 60g caster sugar over a medium heat until the sugar and milk powder are completely dissolved. Remove from the heat.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and 50g caster sugar.
  • While the milk mixture is still warm, gradually pour into the egg yolks, whisking continuously. Scrape the whole mixture back into your saucepan.
  • Cook over a low heat, stirring constantly and scraping the bottom of the pan with a heatproof spatula, until the custard is thick enough to coat the back of the spatula. Remove from the heat and strain back into the medium bowl through a fine mesh sieve.
  • Whisk 70g Why Nut pistachio or hazelnut paste into the mixture. Taste a small amount and, if you like it a little stronger, add up to 20g more paste.
  • Place the bowl in your ice bath and whisk until cool. Refrigerate the mixture for a minimum of two hours – or preferably overnight – then churn according to your ice cream machine manufacturer’s instructions.


  • The addition of skimmed milk powder helps to stabilize the emulsion by absorbing the extra water in the ice cream. This produces a beautifully smooth texture, giving body to the ice cream without the addition of too much extra fat. Skimmed milk powder is available in most supermarkets or online.
  • The perfect custard requires patience and should be cooked slowly over a gentle heat to prevent splitting. Make sure the mixture never comes to the boil and stir constantly for the best results.
  • The amount of nut paste used can be adjusted to taste. Remember that when the custard is frozen the flavour is muted slightly, so you want your mixture to taste a little stronger and sweeter than you might think before it is churned.

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