Maple Walnut Ice Cream
When I was a kid, I loved Maple Walnut Ice Cream.
... Sort of.
“Maple Walnut Ice Cream” meant two very different things.
Grocery store ice cream. Basically, sweetened flavoured milk with maple extract in it, frozen.
There was this brand of ice cream that we’d get delivered once in a while, as a treat. It was much richer than the grocery store ice cream.
I wasn’t as experienced with taste back then, so I’m not sure if it was that they used more heavy cream, if there were more eggs involved, or what. It was just obviously more decadent than the grocery store stuff, even to my unrefined palate.
Aside from that, it tasted far more like maple syrup.
I’m not sure if they used some maple syrup and some extract, all maple syrup, or just used a BETTER maple extract than the grocery store stuff, but again... whatever it was, it was so much better!
I am the BIGGEST walking stereotype of a Canadian sometimes... especially when it comes to maple syrup.
Love the stuff. Have literally done shots of it at times.
I was going to say “shockingly, I don’t have many maple syrup recipes up on this site, but I guess that’s not super accurate...
Maple Boubon Glazed Carrots
Maple Buttertart Liqueur
Maple Butter Tarts
Maple Dijon Wings
Maple Hard Apple Cider
Maple Pumpkin Pie
Maple Pumpkin Spiced Muffins
Maple Walnut Baklava
Maple Walnut Spiced Pumpkin Buns
Maple White Cheddar Popcorn
... I even have a DIY craft post on How to Make Roses Out of Maple Leaves
So maybe I’m a little biased (?), but I’ve never liked “Maple Walnut” Ice Cream that’s made with extract. It just doesn’t do justice to MAPLE, you know?
Proper Maple Walnut Ice Cream
When I was writing More Than Poutine, I decided to include a *Proper* Maple Walnut Ice Cream.
Is it particularly unique to Canada?
Not so far as I can tell... however, it can be hard to come by.
Finding *proper* Maple Walnut Ice Cream can be even more difficult, and this resulted in many requests to include it in this book. So, I did!
I designed this recipe to be the decadent ice cream I was always searching for.
For the purist, this is made using actual maple syrup - and plenty of it! - as the sole sweetener and source of maple flavouring - no extract!
It also has plenty of milk fat from the heavy cream, and additional richness from the use of a good number of egg yolks. All of this results in an ice cream that is incredibly rich and decadent.
Finally, there’s the matter of the walnuts. While many versions of this flavour seem to just toss walnuts into a maple flavoured ice cream, I wanted the walnut flavour more entwined with the ice cream.
SO, the walnuts are toasted - for maximum flavour! - before being steeped into the milk mixture. This gives a fantastic roasty, nutty flavour to the ice cream itself, and more of a complexity than many have.
Sure, it’s an extra step or two, but it’s still easy to make... and totally worth the effort!
Oh, and as a final note...
When I’m feeling extra indulgent, I’ll drizzle this with maple syrup and top with toasted walnuts!
This recipe is one of many fantastic Canadian recipes in my cookbook, "More Than Poutine: Favourite Foods from my Home and Native Land”. "More than Poutine" is a Canadian cookbook like no other - written by a Canadian living away, it includes both traditional home cooking recipes, as well as accurate homemade versions of many of the snacks, sauces, convenience foods, and other food items that are hard to come by outside of Canada! Order your copy here on this site, through Amazon, or through any major bookseller!
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Maple Walnut Ice Cream
- 1 ¼ cups Walnut pieces
- 1 cup Dark Maple Syrup
- 2 cups Heavy whipping cream
- 1 cup Milk
- 6 Large egg yolks
- ½ tsp Salt
- In a dry, nonstick saucepan, toast the walnuts over medium heat, until golden and fragrant.
- Allow walnuts to cool, chop. Set aside.
- In a large saucepan, boil maple syrup over medium heat - stirring frequently - for 8 minutes.
- Add chopped walnuts, heavy cream, and milk; whisk well to combine.
- Bring mixture to a simmer, stir well, and remove from heat. Allow to sit for 1 hour.
- Once the hour is up: beat egg yolks and salt together in a large bowl until fluffy.
- Add to cooled maple mixture, whisking until smooth and combined – you don't want any unblended chunks of egg mixture.
- Cook mixture over medium high; heat just to the boiling point, whisking constantly. As the mixture begins to boil, remove from heat.
- Transfer mixture to a heat safe bowl. Allow to cool to room temperature before covering and transferring to the fridge.
- Chill overnight.
- Prepare ice cream according to your ice cream maker's instructions - depending on the size of your ice cream maker, you may need to do this in batches.
- Transfer ice cream to an appropriate container. Cover and freeze for at least a few hours, to firm up.