Cut the vanilla beans in half lengthwise. Scrape out the seeds with a small spoon. Put the seeds and pods in a medium saucepan. Add the half-and-half and honey and stir to dissolve the honey. Heat over medium heat, stirring from time to time, just until tiny bubbles form around the edges of the pan, about 8 minutes.
Remove the pan from the heat and let the mixture steep, covered, for 1 hour. Remove the vanilla pods and discard. Mix in the egg yolks and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until lightly thickened and a thermometer reads 170°F, about 10 minutes,. Remove from the heat.
Cover and refrigerate the ice cream batter until thoroughly chilled. Transfer to an ice cream maker and freeze according to manufacturer's instructions. Scoop directly from the ice cream maker for soft serve, or store in a freezer for at least 1 hour for firmer ice cream.
Serve scoops sprinkled with a little smoked salt.
Serves 4; Makes about 1 quart
Reprinted with Permission from ©Salted A Manifesto on the World's Most Essential Mineral, With Recipes, by Mark Bitterman, published by Ten Speed Press click for book review
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