Harvest Apple Ice Cream with Warm Caramel

I created this recipe for a big contest, but (sigh) it wasn’t chosen.  They picked one winner from each midwestern state — so somewhere out on the plains of Kansas is a guy or gal with a really great recipe — but for now I can tell you that this is some seriously fantastic ice cream.  A perfect transition from summer to fall.

I made this with the first crop of apples from our very own apple trees. Look at how beautiful they are!

Harvest Apple Ice Cream with Warm Caramel

Harvest Apple Ice Cream with Warm Caramel

Ingredients

Ice Cream:

3 apples, peeled and cored 1/4 cup brown sugar

2 tablespoons butter

1/2 cup 2% milk

1/2 cup half-and-half

1 cup heavy cream

2 tablespoons sour cream

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 cup sugar

Caramel:

1 cup of sugar

1 stick cinnamon

6 tablespoons butter

1/2 cup heavy cream, room temperature

Instructions

Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Slice each apple into eight wedges and then cut each wedge in half crosswise. Place the apples in a baking dish just big enough to hold them in a single layer. Add the cinnamon stick, sprinkle the brown sugar over the top of the apples, and dot with the butter. Bake at 400 until the apples are golden brown and soft, about 40-50 minutes. From time to time, spoon the melted butter and cooking juices over the apples and give them a gentle stir. When the apples are done, set them aside to cool slightly.

In a blender or food processor, add the milk, half-and-half, cream, sour cream, ground cinnamon and sugar and process until combined. Pour in baked apple mixture and juices (discarding cinnamon stick). Process until smooth and well-combined. Refrigerate for two hours (up to overnight).

Pour chilled mixture into an electric ice cream maker and freeze according to manufacturer’s instructions. Spoon ice cream into a chilled container, cover place in the freezer for at least 1 hour, or until desired consistency is achieved.

To make the caramel, heat sugar on medium-high heat in a heavy-bottomed 3-quart saucepan. As the sugar begins to melt, stir vigorously with a whisk or wooden spoon. As soon as the sugar comes to a boil (liquid will be slightly amber), stop stirring to prevent sugar from crystallizing.

Remove from heat and add the butter to the pan; whisk until melted. Slowly whisk in cream (mixture will foam vigorously so wear an oven mitt). Whisk until smooth and let cool slightly. (You can also refrigerate up to 2 weeks and re-warm before serving.)

To serve, scoop ice cream into chilled sundae dishes. Top with warm caramel.

Serves 6.

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