Rocky Road Ice Cream

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Prep Time: 60 minutes
Cook Time: 180 minutes
Servings: 6

The classic flavor combination of chocolate, nuts and marshmallows is always a crowd-pleaser. Serve this sweet treat at a cookout or whenever you want to evoke the warm, carefree days of summer.


  • 1 1/2 cups (12 fl. oz./375 ml) whole milk
  • 1 1/2 cups (12 fl. oz./375 ml) heavy cream
  • 2/3 cup (5 oz./155 g) sugar
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 3 Tbs. unsweetened regular or Dutch-process cocoa powder
  • 6 oz. (185 g) semisweet chocolate, chopped into small pieces
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup (1 1/2 oz./45 g) chopped walnuts
  • 1/3 cup (1/2 oz./15 g) miniature marshmallows


In a saucepan, combine the milk, 1 cup (8 fl. oz./250 ml) of the cream and the sugar. In a bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and the remaining 1/2 cup (4 fl. oz./125 ml) cream until well blended. Sprinkle the cocoa powder over the yolk mixture and whisk until evenly colored and no lumps remain.

Place the saucepan over medium heat and cook, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon, until bubbles form around the edges and the sugar dissolves, 4 to 5 minutes. Do not allow to come to a boil. Remove from the heat. Whisk the egg yolk mixture while slowly pouring in the hot milk mixture. When almost all of the hot liquid has been added, slowly pour the warmed yolk mixture back into the saucepan, still whisking. Place the saucepan over medium heat and cook, stirring constantly, until the custard is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, 4 to 5 minutes. Do not boil.

Remove the saucepan from the heat. Sprinkle the chocolate over the custard and let stand for 1 minute, then stir gently until the chocolate is melted and the custard is smooth. Stir in the vanilla until blended.

Pour the hot custard through a sieve into a clean bowl, gently pressing the liquid through the sieve and leaving any grainy solids in the sieve.

Prepare an ice bath by partially filling a large bowl with ice water. Nestle the bowl with the custard in the ice bath and let cool for 30 to 45 minutes. Place a piece of plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the custard and on top of the bowl. Refrigerate for 3 to 24 hours.

Prepare an ice cream maker with at least a 1-quart (1-l) capacity according to the manufacturer’s directions. Pour the custard into the ice cream maker and churn until the custard reaches the consistency of thick whipped cream. During the last 1 to 2 minutes of churning, add the walnuts and marshmallows and continue to churn until incorporated. Transfer to a plastic freezer container, cover tightly and freeze until firm, at least 3 hours or up to 3 days. Makes about 1 quart (1 l); serves 6.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Frozen Desserts (Weldon Owen 2014)

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