Vanilla bean ice cream

Simple, smooth, creamy and deliciously vanilla!

Vanilla bean ice-cream is a true demonstration of the super powers of these exquisite black pods.
This simple anglaise is the perfect base for other flavored ice-creams. You simply fold your favorite delicacies through the custard once it is semi-frozen. Experiment with some honeycomb or ginger bread.


  • 12 egg yolks
  • 300 grams castor sugar
  • 500ml full cream milk
  • 500ml pouring cream
  • 2 vanilla pod

*Use a cooking thermometer for perfect results


Place the milk and cream into a saucepan. Split the Plump Pod vanilla beans length-wise and scrape out all the seeds. Place the seeds and pods into the cream and milk to infuse. Over a low heat slowly bring the milk, cream and vanilla to simmer point.

Whilst the liquids are heating, place the yolks and sugar into a mixing bowl and lightly whisk until well combined. When the infused cream and milk comes to a simmer, take off the heat and whisk the liquids into the eggs and sugar. Return this mixture with the pods to a clean saucepan and begin to cook out over a medium heat.

It is important to pay close attention to the cooking of the anglaise, as overcooking will cause the mixture to curdle like scrambled eggs, and if it is under cooked it will not thicken.

Use a wooden spoon to stir the anglaise constantly as it heats. I always use a cooking thermometer to perfect this stage. The anglaise must not cook beyond 80C. You are aiming to thicken the mixture until it coats the back the wooden spoon. The test is to run your finger through the anglaise on the spoon and see a distinct line remain in the thickened custard.

When the custard is thick enough or reaches 79C remove it from the heat and immediately pour it through a sieve into a fresh bowl. The heat in the anglais will keep cooking the egg mixture, so you need to be set up and ready with this equipment, so you can begin cooling the mixture straight away.

Cool the custard on the bench or over a bain-marie of icy water, stirring constantly at first to assist the cooling process. Once at room temperature place the anglaise in the fridge until cold.

If you have an ice-cream machine you can churn the ice-cream until semi-frozen then pop into the freezer until fully set.

Alternatively you can set it by pouring the custard into a shallow dish, and placing it in the freezer. Whisk the setting custard intermittently until frozen, to keep it light and fluffy.



Remember you can reuse your vanilla bean. These oily pods still contain plenty of flavor.  Simply rinse the milk solids off the pods and pat dry with some kitchen towel. Air dry and then pop into a bowl of sugar or even under your pillow.


  • What to do with all the egg whites left over from making the ice cream? Try making some vanilla nougat, or some savory souffles. Recipes to come…
  • The egg shells are a perfect addition to the compost, worm farm or just sprinkled directly on the garden. Adding eggshells to your soil will add calcium, which assists plants to build cell walls. Plants will grow faster and stronger, and it calcium prevents blossom-end rot in plants such as tomatoes and squash. Crushed egg shells also helps to fight off pests such as snails and slugs. It s a bit like death by a thousand cuts, as the critters crawl over the sharp edges of the shell.

Keywords: vanilla, ice-cream, desserts