The texture of this ice cream is slightly different than all the rest of my ice creams, while the base is still extraordinarily creamy, it's studded with a fine layer of tiny, crunchy, toasted macadamia nuts. As it begins to warm and melt it doesn't become runny milk as typical, it becomes almost foamy thanks to the texture. The result is a hearty, toasted flavor that the fills the palette with joy. The hint of white chocolate gives this ice cream a sweet holiday undertone.
This ice cream feels like a fall or winter treat, but paired with the right thing and with the right sauce (say nestled inside a delicate roasted peach), it could easily become a fat and happy summer dessert.
Fat and Happy Food Blog Tips and techniques: Blending the nuts is the key to achieving this texture; it won't be the same if you try to use the Cuisinart or if you try to chop the nuts by hand.
Gently warm the cream over medium heat to just below boiling.
In the meantime, slowly toast the macadamia nuts in a dry pan tossing often to avoid burning any of them. Whisk together the yolks with 1/2 cup sugar until fluffy, pale and doubled in size.
When the cream is warm, pour half of it into a blender. Add in the toasted nuts, salt and 2 tablespoons of sugar. Blend to combine and chop up the nuts, about 1 minute. Use the other half of the warm cream to temper the egg yolks, slowly drizzling the warm cream into the whisked yolks.
Return the yolk mixture and the nut mixture back to the saucepan. Slowly cook over medium heat, stirring often with a wooden spoon until thickened. Test the thickness by running your finger on the back of the spoon, if you can leave a line in the custard it is ready. Add in the white chocolate, stir until melted.
Remove from heat and cool in an ice bath. Cover and let steep overnight. Strain the mixture, keep in mind you are not straining out all of the toasted nut, just the larger pieces while the finer ones should push through the strainer. Process according to your ice cream manufacturers directions.