A Sweet Goodbye to Summer


I purchased my ice cream maker late in the summer and therefore the second frozen concoction to emerge from it is a dense, creamy ice cream that manages to straddle the seasons–cooling me off during the still-too-warm days of late summer but welcoming fall with the warm flavors cinnamon and vanilla.

How it is I’ve been on this earth for 31 years without ever tasting a cinnamon-flavored ice cream is a complete mystery to me. Because even though I have tasted so many wonderful gelatos in Italy, (each time exclaiming, “THIS is my new favorite flavor!”), I can now say that this cinnamon vanilla ice cream is the best I’ve ever tasted.

I used the recipe found on allrecipes.com and the main change I made was to use a vanilla bean to replace the vanilla extract in the recipe. Doing this intensified the vanilla flavor and the little specks of vanilla seed add an interesting texture. Amazingly, the vanilla was not overpowered by the cinnamon–the two flavors stand up side by side and complement each other perfectly.

If you excited about the first day of autumn but not ready to let go of the frozen delights of summer, this ice cream is what you need! The recipe is scaled for a 1 1/2 quart ice cream maker, I use the Cuisinart ICE-20. If you’ve been thinking about buying an ice cream maker, just take the plunge and do it, this ice cream will make it worth your while. Just imagine your Thanksgiving apple and pumpkin pies topped with homemade cinnamon vanilla ice cream…need I say more?

Cinnamon Vanilla Ice Cream

1 cup white sugar
1 1/2 cups half-and-half cream
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 vanilla bean
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

  1. In a saucepan over medium-low heat, stir together the sugar and half-and-half. When the mixture begins to simmer, remove from heat.
  2. Whisk half of the cream mixture into the eggs (whisk quickly so as not to scramble the eggs). Pour the egg mixture back into the saucepan, and stir in the heavy cream.
  3. With a sharp knife, cut the vanilla bean in half lengthwise then scrape out the tiny seeds on the inside. Add the vanilla bean and the seeds to the cream mixture.
  4. Return the cream mixture to the stove and continue cooking over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a metal spoon.
  5. Remove from heat and whisk in the cinnamon. Set aside to cool then refrigerate until cold (I press plastic wrap over the surface to prevent a skin from forming).
  6. Pour cold mixture into an ice cream maker, and freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

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  1. 1
    peabody Says:

    Oh ice cream is a year round food, not just Summer ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. 2
    mac Says:

    Ice cream over gelato? You really are an American. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  3. 3
    Nicole Says:

    mac, as soon as i find myself some cinnamon gelato, i’ll take back that statement ๐Ÿ˜‰

  4. 4
    Jennifer Says:

    Oh, wow! I bet this is divine. You could go all-American and put it on some apple pie.

  5. 5
    Brilynn Says:

    That sounds delicious. I’d encourage you to make cinnamon banana ice cream too, it’s a good combination.

  6. 6
    rachel Says:

    Wow, this looks so good!

  7. 7
    Helene Says:

    That combination has been something on my “to try” list for a long time now. SInce it is wtill quite hot here, I maight give it a go this weekend. Great lucious picture.

  8. 8
    Orchidea Says:

    Really nice… I love icecream! But it is getting cold here… so I will wait next summer for trying this one.
    I surfe a bit in your blog and like it a lot.

  9. 9
    Mae Says:

    Wow. What flavour combination! I will try this Nicole. Sounds an absolute delight! Thanks for the recipe.

    Photo’s gorgeous as usual.

  10. 10
    Pearl Says:

    It’s great to uncover a new way to make cinnamon shine.

  11. 11
    jeannette Says:

    wow, that right there is my dream ice cream! mmm, cinnamon…

  12. 12
    Emily Says:

    Is there any way to make this without vanilla beans (say, with extract)? Vanilla beans are so expensive. How much extract would suffice, do you think?

  13. 13
    Nicole Says:

    Hi Emily, vanilla extract would be perfectly fine in this recipe. I would add a teaspoon of extract at the end when you add the cinnamon. Then just taste it and see if you like the flavor. You could always add a little bit more if you think it needs it. Hope you try it!

  14. 14
    Steve Says:

    I am making this ice cream tonight. It sounds delicious!

    A good rull of thumb is to use 3 inches of good A-Grade vanilla per TBS of extract in a recipe.

    I use 4 inches (10cm) per TBS, but I love vanilla.

    Boston Vanilla Bean Company stocks some of the finest vanilla available at http://www.bostonvanillabeans.com


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