What to do with a leftover pumpkin may not be a huge ordeal for most people, but this was the first time I had to make such a decision. Pumpkins are not something I normally purchase - but this year I caught the pumpkin bug. How could I not, with the entrance to every supermarket flooded with them? And so I purchased one! My intention was never to carve it; I just wanted it to add a little bit of Halloween ambiance to my kitchen. However, the day after Halloween I could not rationalize disposing of it, being a firm believer that everything has more than one purpose.
Somewhere between making the decision to put the pumpkin into my shopping cart and being determined not to discard it, I turned it into my fall/winter version of "cookies and cream" ice cream. Great decision!
Pumpkin & Spice Cookie Ice Cream
2 cups heavy cream
1 cup whole milk
3/4 cup Muscovado sugar, or brown sugar
1 tablespoon coffee spice mix
1/4 teaspoon salt
5 egg yolks
1 cup pumpkin purée*
1 teaspoon bourbon, or vanilla
1 cup spice cookies, crumbled
Make an ice bath by putting some ice and a little water in a large bowl and nest a smaller bowl inside it. Set a mesh strainer over the top. Heat the cream, milk, sugar, spices and salt in a sauce pan until it almost boils, about 5 minutes.
Reduce heat to low. Add 1/2 cup of the cream mixture to the egg yolks to temper them. Stir and add the eggs to the sauce pan. Cook at low heat without boiling until slightly the cream mixture thickens and coats the back of the spoon. Store in an airtight container in the freezer.
Pour the mixture through the strainer into the bowl nested in an ice bath. Stir until cool; then chill thoroughly, preferably overnight. When chilled, whisk in pumpkin pureé and bourbon. Pour into the bowl of your ice cream maker and freeze according to manufacturer's instructions. Add crushed cookies the last 5-10 minutes of freezing. To serve, garnish with more crushed spice cookies.
*You can use canned pumpkin purée in the recipe, but it is very easy to make especially if you have a spare pumpkin hanging around your kitchen. For easy to follow instructions, try this recipe by The Pioneer Woman: Homemade Pumpkin Purée