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Vin Santo Ice Cream With Cantuccini

by . Featured in NIGELLA SUMMER
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Introduction

One of the loveliest puddings, if it quite counts as that, to order in restaurants in Tuscany, is a glass of vin santo, that resinous, intense, amber-coloured holy wine, with a few almond-studded biscuits to dunk in. The idea for this comes purely from that: the ice cream is further deepened by the addition of treacly muscovado sugar, and the wine in it keeps it voluptuously velvety, even after being frozen. You don't absolutely need to serve the cantuccini biscuits with it, but the combination is pretty well unbeatable.

One of the loveliest puddings, if it quite counts as that, to order in restaurants in Tuscany, is a glass of vin santo, that resinous, intense, amber-coloured holy wine, with a few almond-studded biscuits to dunk in. The idea for this comes purely from that: the ice cream is further deepened by the addition of treacly muscovado sugar, and the wine in it keeps it voluptuously velvety, even after being frozen. You don't absolutely need to serve the cantuccini biscuits with it, but the combination is pretty well unbeatable.

Vin Santo Ice Cream With Cantuccini
Photo by Petrina Tinslay

Ingredients

Serves: 8-10

Metric Cups
  • 584 millilitres double cream
  • 200 millilitres vin santo
  • 8 egg yolks
  • 6 tablespoons light brown muscovado sugar
  • 1 packet cantuccini biscuits
  • 2½ cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup vin santo
  • 8 egg yolks
  • 6 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 1 packet cantuccini biscuits

Method

  1. Heat the double cream in one pan, the vin santo in another. Whisk the yolks and muscovado sugar together and, still whisking, pour first the hot vin santo and then the warmed cream into them. Pour this mixture into a good-sized pan and cook till a velvety custard. I don't bother with a double boiler, and actually don't even keep the heat very low, but you will need to stir constantly, and if you think there's any trouble ahead, plunge the into a sink half filled with water and whisk like mad. It shouldn't take more than 10 minutes, this way, for the custard to cook.
  2. When it has thickened, take it off the heat and allow to cool. Then chill and freeze in an ice-cream maker or put the cooled custard into a covered container, stick it in the freezer and whip it out every hour for 3 hours as it freezes and give it a good beating, either with an electric whisk, by hand or in the processor. That gets rid of any ice crystals that form and that make the ice cream crunchy rather than smooth.
  3. Serve by scooping out into small wine glasses, giving everyone some cantuccini to dip into the deep, almost incense-intense ice cream.
  1. Heat the heavy cream in one pan, the vin santo in another. Whisk the yolks and muscovado sugar together and, still whisking, pour first the hot vin santo and then the warmed cream into them. Pour this mixture into a good-sized pan and cook till a velvety custard. I don't bother with a double boiler, and actually don't even keep the heat very low, but you will need to stir constantly, and if you think there's any trouble ahead, plunge the into a sink half filled with water and whisk like mad. It shouldn't take more than 10 minutes, this way, for the custard to cook.
  2. When it has thickened, take it off the heat and allow to cool. Then chill and freeze in an ice-cream maker or put the cooled custard into a covered container, stick it in the freezer and whip it out every hour for 3 hours as it freezes and give it a good beating, either with an electric whisk, by hand or in the processor. That gets rid of any ice crystals that form and that make the ice cream crunchy rather than smooth.
  3. Serve by scooping out into small wine glasses, giving everyone some cantuccini to dip into the deep, almost incense-intense ice cream.

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What 1 Other has said

  • Wow, this sounds amazing, however, I've shopped for this wine with no luck. I presume it's a dessert wine? Shop assistants haven't heard of it. I've checked out Sainsbury's, Tesco's. It's only available in several London shops of Waitrose. On line wasn't much help & if it is available at a high price too. Many thanks.

    Posted by Adena on 22nd August 2011
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