Nougat Ice-Cream

Delectable Nougat Ice-Cream, flavoured with rum, may be served with crisp wafers, waffles or sweet biscuits .

1 pint single cream

1 vanilla pod

1 egg yolk

1 tablespoon custard powder

4 oz. plus

3 tablespoons sugar

1½ teaspoons gelatine, dissolved in

2 tablespoons hot water

1 egg white

4 oz. flaked blanched almonds, lightly toasted

2 tablespoons rum

Set the thermostat of the refrigerator to its coldest setting.

In a small saucepan, scald the cream with the vanilla pod (bring to just under boiling point) over moderate heat. Re-move the pan from the heat, cover it and set the cream aside to infuse for 20 minutes.

In a medium-sized mixing bowl, beat the egg yolk, custard powder, 3 table-spoons of the sugar and 2 tablespoons of the scalded cream together with a wooden spoon until the mixture is smooth. Remove and discard the vanilla pod from the remaining cream and pour the cream, in a thin stream, on to the egg mixture, stirring constantly.

Return the cream mixture to the saucepan and place the pan over low heat. Cook the custard, stirring constantly, for 5 minutes, or until it is smooth and thick.

Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the dissolved gelatine. Set the custard aside to cool completely, pour it into a bowl, cover and chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour.

Remove the bowl from the refrigerator and pour the custard into a chilled freezing tray. Place the tray in the frozen food storage compartment of the refrigerator and freeze for 30 minutes.

Remove the tray from the refrigerator and spoon the custard into a medium-sized, chilled mixing bowl. Beat it for 1 minute with a wire whisk or rotary beater. Set aside.

In a small mixing bowl, beat the egg white with a wire whisk or rotary beater until it forms stiff peaks. With a metal spoon, fold the egg white into the custard and combine the mixture thoroughly.

Nougat in its many forms: some covered with chocolate, others with mixed fruit and nuts and one with almonds.

Spoon the custard mixture back into the freezing tray and return it to the frozen food storage compartment. Freeze for 1 hour, or until the ice-cream is firm to the touch.

While the ice-cream is freezing, prepare the nougat. In a small saucepan, melt the remaining sugar over low heat, stirring occasionally. Stir in the flaked almonds and increase the heat to moderately high. Boil the caramel, without stirring, until it is a rich golden brown colour. Do not allow the caramel to darken too much, or it will burn and taste bitter.

Remove the pan from the heat. Pour the caramel on to an oiled marble slab or hard surface and set it aside to cool and harden completely.

When the caramel is completely cooled, crush it to a fine powder with a rolling pin or mallet, or break it into pieces and pound it in a mortar with a pestle. Set aside.

Remove the ice-cream from the refrig-erator and tuin it into a medium-sized, chilled mixing bowl. Beat the ice-cream with a wire whisk or rotary beater for 2 minutes, or until it is completely smooth. Beat in the crushed caramel mixture and the rum and combine the mixture thoroughly.

Spoon the mixture back into the freezer tray and return it to the frozen food storage compartment of the refrigerator.

Freeze the ice-cream for 1 hour, or until it is firm.

Remove the freezer tray from the refrigerator. Spoon the ice-cream into individual chilled serving glasses and serve immediately.

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