Domino Players Tested, Mantecado, Cuban Vanilla Ice Cream from 'The Cuban Table'

Sometimes you need domino players around to test and approve your latest ice-cream batch as was case with this Cuban vanilla ice-cream re-created by Suzy Batlle at Azucar! Ice Cream Company and one of the recipes in The Cuban Table (St Martin's Press, October 2014) by Hungry Sofia Ana Sofia Pelaez...

Cuban Vanilla Ice Cream, Mantecado

Makes 1 quart

While the lineup at the ¡Azucar! Ice Cream Company always includes classic Cuban ice cream
flavors such as guava, mamey, and coconut, Suzy Battle received endless requests for mantecado—a rich vanilla ice cream she’d only ever heard about. Suzy invited the domino players permanently perched across the street from her Little Havana shop to test the recipe until she got it right. She generously shared the results with me adapted for small homemade batches.

For the custard

6 large egg yolks
1 cup whole milk
1 cup sugar
1½ teaspoons unbleached all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
Pinch ground cinnamon
Pinch ground nutmeg
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
3 large egg whites, at room temperature
5 tablespoons sugar

One 12-ounce can evaporated milk, chilled


To prepare the custard, combine the egg yolks, whole milk, 1 cup sugar, flour, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a food processor or blender and pulse until well blended. Pass the milk mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a 3- to 4-quart saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the custard covers the back of a wooden spoon, 4 to 6 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract. Chill the custard at least 2 hours or overnight.

In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites on low speed until foamy, about 1 minute. Gradually add the remaining 5 tablespoons sugar and beat on medium speed until it forms stiff peaks, about 5 minutes. Add the chilled evaporated milk and continue to beat until it thickens slightly, 2 to 3 additional minutes. Stir in the prepared custard and mix until well blended.

Process in an ice-cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions, 15 to 20 minutes.

Freeze until ready to serve

(* Recipe reproduced with permission from The Cuban Table -St Martin's Press, October 2014- by Ana Sofia Pelaez, Photographs by Ellen Silverman)

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