It starts with ripping the skin off a turkey or a chicken.
Then you crisp the skins up to unhealthy perfection.
And incorporate the crisped skins into a brittle.
Then for the 2nd sugar work of the day, some salted caramel is made using turkey stock, giving that savoury note throughout the whole ice cream.
Just think of it as salted caramel ice cream, but with ~umami~.
Overall I think the turkey-ness of the ice cream is pretty subtle, although you get a good kick to the taste-buds every time you come across a bit of turkey skin in the brittle.
And every single person who has tasted the ice cream liked the savouriness of the ice cream, to their surprise. So give it a try!
The recipe is once again from Salt and Straws cookbook. I reduced the water at the end when I made this ice cream the 2nd time round and liked the texture better, so Ive reflected that in the recipe below.
Ice cream base
- 1/2 cup sugar (100g)
- 2 tbsp dry milk powder (12g)
- 1/4 tsp xanthum gum (see notes)
- 2 tbsp light corn syrup (45g)
- 1 1/3 cup whole milk (315g)
- 1 1/3 cup heavy cream (300g)
Turkey skin brittle(will make more than you need)
- 1/2 cup big pieces of turkey or chicken skin (I used the skins from about 6 large chicken drumsticks)
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 cup granulated sugar (200g)
- 1/2 cup light corn syrup
- 1/2 cup water
- 8 tbsp/1 stick/113g unsalted butter
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking soda
Salted turkey caramel (will make more than you need)
- 1 cup granulated sugar (200g)
- 1/4 cup light corn syrup
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1 cup turkey stock (use a super strong flavoured one, none of that organic healthy foofoo, embrace the MSG)
- 2 tbsp rendered fat (from the brittle, or you could use chicken fat)
- 2 tsp salt
- Pinch dried thyme leaves or generous pinch fresh thyme leaves
Ice cream base(the day before)
- Combine the sugar, milk powder, and xanthum gum into a small bowl and mix well.
- Pour the corn syrup and whole milk into a saucepan and stir well. Add the sugar mixture and whisk until smooth. Heat over medium heat, stirring often and adjusting the heat to prevent a simmer, until the sugar has fully dissolved (about 3 mins). Remove the pot from the heat.
- Whisk in the cream and transfer the mixture to an airtight container and refrigerate until well chilled, at least 6 hours.
Turkey skin brittle (at least the day before)
- Heat the oven to 350F/180C. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
- Coat the turkey/chicken skin with the vegetable oil and lay them flat on the sheet pan.
- Bake the skins, rotating halfway through, until the skins are deeply browned and crisp, 15-30 mins (turkey skin will take longer than chicken skin). Transfer the skin to a cooling rack and cool to room temperature.
- Collect the rendered fat from the sheet pan and reserve for the caramel.
- Reline the sheet pan with a fresh piece of parchment paper.
- Crumble the cooled skin to bite-sized pieces.
- In a medium-sized saucepan, combine the sugar, corn syrup, and water, and stir until all the sugar looks wet. Set the pan over medium-high heat and cook, stirring occasionally, until all the sugar has melted, about 3 minutes.
- Continue to cook, this time covered and without stirring, until the mixture has thickened slightly, about 3 minutes. Add the butter and salt, then immediately stir until all the butter has completely melted.
- Attach a candy thermometer to the side of the pan and let the mixture reach 290F/143C.
- Remove the pan from the heat and quickly stir in the turkey skins, doing your best to distribute the pieces throughout.
- Quickly stir in the baking soda (it will bubble up), and then immediately pour the mixture onto the lined sheet pan. Use a spatula to spread the mixture out to an even layer under 1/4 inch thick. Let the brittle sit uncovered until it has cooled to room temperature, about an hour.
- Coarsely chop the brittle into small (no bigger than 1/4 inch) pieces (I found it easiest to do this by pulsing bits of the brittle in a food processor carefully because you dont want to end up with brittle dust).
- Store the brittle pieces in an airtight container in the freezer until they are ready to use, up to 3 months.
Salted turkey caramel
- Combine the sugar, corn syrup, and water in a medium saucepan, and stir until all the sugar looks wet.
- Cover the pan, set over medium-high heat, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has completely melted, about 3 mins.
- Continue to cook, covered but without stirring, until the mixture has thickened slightly, about 3 mins.
- Remove the lid and continue cooking, not stirring, until the mixture turns the colour of very dark maple syrup and begins to smoke, about 5-8 mins more.
- Take the pan off the heat, and while whisking the mixture, stream in the cream and turkey stork (do not dump it in at once). The mixture will bubble furiously.
- Put the pot over medium-high heat again and attach a candy thermometer to the pans side. Let the mixture simmer until the thermometer registers 230F/110C, about 15-20 mins.
- Take the pan off the heat and add the turkey fat, salt, and thyme, stirring slowly but constantly until the fat has melted.
- Let the caramel cool to room temperature and transfer to an airtight container. Store it at room temperature for up to a week. If the caramel separates just make sure to stir it well before using.
- Put the ice cream base, 3/4 cup salted turkey caramel, and 1/4 cup water into a bowl and whisk to combine.
- Pour the mixture into an ice cream maker and turn on the machine, and churn until the mixture has the texture of soft-serve.
- Meanwhile, set aside about 1/2 cup of brittle.
- When the ice cream is ready, transfer a layer of ice cream into a freezer-friendly container. Then sprinkle on some brittle, using a spoon to press them in gently. Repeat with a layer of ice cream, then the brittle. (If you use a wide and shallow container, like me, just do 2 layers of each).
- Cover the ice cream with parchment paper (I think this is to prevent freezer burn), pressing it to the surface of the ice cream so it adheres, and cover with a lid.
- Freeze the ice cream until solid.
- Xanthum gum is a thickener/stabiliser commonly used in vegan/gluten-free baking, so thats where you might find them in the supermarket. I got the Bobs Red Mill brand.
- I would really recommend using a turkey stock with a strong flavour. I bought an organic one which was quite mild, and had to top up the bird flavour with some chicken bouillon.
- If youre using an ice cream maker which bowl needs to be frozen beforehand, make sure to cover the bowl with clingfilm so ice crystals wont form in the bowl and cause your ice cream to have a sandy texture. Also to be safe, freeze the bowl for at least 2 days and at the coldest setting your freezer will go.
- My ice cream maker takes about 20-30 minutes to reach soft-serve consistency.
- I used the extra salted turkey caramel in an apple pie and it was fantastic.