Caramel Ice Cream

Combine in a large mixing bowl:
2 cups of half and half
1 cup of heavy cream
1 teaspoon of vanilla

Set this aside and stir together in a large saucepan:
1 cup of sugar
1/4 cup of water

Bring to a simmer over medium heat and, without stirring, cook until the mixture becomes a deep amber color – around 10 minutes or so, depending on your stove.  Be careful to not let the mixture burn or it will be bitter.  Once it is at the proper color, stir in the cream mixture, off of the heat; the cold liquid and the hot, hot sugar will bubble up together, so make sure you are ready for it.  Once the bubbling subsides, stir the mixture over medium-low heat until all of the caramel is dissolved into the mixture.  Keep warm on low.  In a large mixing bowl, whisk together:
5 large egg yolks
Whisk the yolks until they become thick and lemon-colored, about 5 minutes. Temper the eggs with a soup ladle of the hot liquid mixture, whisking constantly as you add it to the eggs; this will keep the eggs from cooking into a scrambled mess.  Once tempered, you can add all of the hot liquid into the eggs, whisking as you pour.  Return the mixture to the saucepan to finish the custard over medium-low heat.  Basically, you want to just cook the eggs so that they are not raw when you freeze the ice cream.  You’ll know the eggs are cooked when the mix is thick and coats the back of a wooden spoon.  Once this is done, you will want to cool the custard to room temperature before doing anything else.  I have found that it is always best for the flavor of the ice cream to let it sit in the refrigerator overnight before freezing, but this is not absolutely necessary.  Regardless, you will want the mix to be cold before putting it into your ice cream maker.  Freeze according to the instructions for your maker and enjoy!

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