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Celebrating Mint Julep Day
May 30, 2014 • Posted by Brea Buffaloe

If you grew up in Kentucky or you’re a Kentucky Derby fan you’re more than likely a mint julep fan as well. Today we will celebrate this amazing drink with a little history and a fun recipe.

What’s a mint julep anyway?

This cocktail is made of crushed ice, sugar, mint and bourbon (sometimes a different spirit).

Mint juleps are centuries old, being first mentioned in print in 1803, the same year the word “cocktail” was first written in the U.S. They were originally made with spirits such as run and whiskey and traveled to Kentucky from Virginia. In 1938, it became the official drink of the Kentucky Derby. About 120,000 are served at the track each year.

While mint juleps are certainly popular and refreshing as a drink, as time as passed the original recipe has not only evolved but mint julep inspired recipes have emerged. Some examples include mint julep milkshakes, cupcakes and blondies. Now that the weather is getting warmer, wouldn’t mint julep ice cream be great?

Mint Julep Ice Cream Recipe from Simple Recipes

Ingredients:
2 ounces of mint leaves (spearmint)
1 1/2 cups of milk
1 1/2 cups of cream
6 egg yolks
3/4 cup of sugar
1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt
1/4 cup of bourbon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Bruise the leaves with a wooden spoon so they'll release their essential oils and flavors. Place them in a sauce pan with the milk and 3/4 cup of the cream. Bring just to a simmer, then remove from heat and cover to steep for 30 minutes.

Fill a large bowl with ice water and set another bowl with the remaining cream in it with a fine mesh sieve over the cream. In a separate bowl whisk together the egg yolks.

Pour the steeped cream mixture through a strainer and toss the mint leaves. Return the milk/cream mixture to the saucepan and add the sugar and salt. Set over medium heat and heat until steaming (not boiling). Slowly pour some of the heated milk mixture into the egg yolks, whisking constantly so that the egg yolks are tempered by the heated milk, but not cooked by it. Pour the egg yolk mixture back into the saucepan.

Stir the mixture over medium heat with a wooden spoon, constantly scraping the bottom of the pan as you stir. When the mixture thickens up and coats the back of the spoon so that you can run your finger across the coating and have the coating not run. This can take between 3 and 10 minutes depending on the heat of your burner.

Pour the mixture through the sieve into the chilled bowl of cream. Mix in the bourbon and vanilla. Cover and place in the refrigerator until the mixture is chilled, 6 hours to overnight. Process in your Cuisinart ice cream maker

Store ice cream in an airtight contained in the freezer for several hours before serving to harden the mixture up a bit. The ice cream will be quite soft straight out of the ice cream machine and will need to harden up a bit for proper ice cream consistency. If you leave it in the freezer too long, just let it sit a few minutes before serving.

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