Every Christmas, our friend Brady from Yr Doing a Great Job makes the best edible present: Ancho Chili Pepper Jelly. It’s the kind of condiment that tastes amazing on everything- breakfast eggs, meat, roasted vegetables, tacos, etc. Our small jar is rationed out over the winter months to make it last as long as possible. This year, we begged off another jar so that we could use it as a mix-in for chocolate ice cream. Brady generously shared the family recipe with us, so you can make your own.
We’ve made chocolate ice cream before with different recipes, but the Bi-Rite recipe was the easiest by far and yielded the best tasting and creamiest results. It’s appropriate that we used a San Francisco creamery’s recipe with Brady’s jelly- he’s a Niners fan all the way.
Ancho Chili Pepper Jelly (makes 6 cups)
6 ancho chilis, dried (4 oz)
1 quart boiling water
1 lemon, juice
4 chipotle peppers, (in can), seeded
1/4 cups adobo sauce (can use sauce from canned chipotles)
3 cups sugar
1 2/3 cups apple cider vinegar
1 3-ounce package of liquid pectin
1. Cover ancho chilis with the boiling water in a bowl and let soften for 30 minutes. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the liquid. Seed the peppers. Puree in a food processor with the reserved liquid. Strain through a fine colander.
2. Puree chipotle peppers and adobo sauce. Strain and add to ancho chilis.
3. In a large dutch oven or heavy bottomed non-reactive pan, heat the lemon juice, sugar and vinegar. Bring to a boil while stirring, until sugar is completely dissolved. Boil for five minutes.
4. Add chili purees and boil for a minute. Add pectin and let boil for another minute, according to package instructions.
5. Pour into cleaned and prepped jars. Seal and cool.
Chocolate Ice Cream (makes a small quart)
Adapted from Sweet Cream and Sugar Cones
5 egg yolks
3/4 cups sugar, split in two halves
1/4 c. Dutch processed cocoa powder (worth the search; if you can’t find it, natural cocoa powder will do, but dutch processed is a much richer chocolate flavor)
1 cup whole milk
1 3/4 cups heavy cream
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. In a medium heatproof bowl, whisk eggs to break yolk, then whisk in 6 tablespoons of the sugar.
2. In a heavy stainless steel saucepan, combine the cocoa powder and remaining 6 tablespoons sugar. Whisk in about 1/4 cups milk to make a paste, stirring to make it smooth. (Dumping the milk in all at once will create lumps! No one likes lumps!) Whisk as you slowly add the rest of the milk, cream, and salt. Heat over medium-high; take off heat when it just approaches a simmer.
3. Scoop out about half of the hot liquid mixture to use to temper the egg yolks. While constantly whisking the eggs, slowly add the hot liquid. Repeat with more of the hot cream mixture, constantly whisking.
4. While stirring the remaining hot cream still on the stove, pour in the egg+cream mixture from the bowl into the pan.
Thickening the chocolate base
5. Put pan back over a medium heat, stirring constantly, until it is thickened. This happens quickly, no more than a couple minutes. This is a good time to use a thermometer to monitor the temperature of the mixture. You want to reach 160 degrees, but no hotter than 170 degrees (chocolate scrambled eggs). If you don’t have a thermometer, just watch carefully for the moment when the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of the spatula (if you run your finger down the spatula, the remaining mixture doesn’t run into the clean area).
6. Strain the mixture into a clean heatproof bowl or ziploc baggie. Immerse container in an ice water bath. Chill until the mixture is cold.
7. Add the vanilla. Freeze the mixture in your ice cream maker according to its instructions.
8. Layer the jelly and ice cream- work quickly and use the jelly more sparingly than you would with other mix-ins- it packs a punch! Start with a layer of jelly at the bottom, spoon in some ice cream, then more jelly, then ice cream, etc. Stop with a layer of ice cream. Press a piece of parchment across the top to prevent freezer burn, put on your lid, and freeze in the coldest part of your freezer for at least two hours.
Start by layering the jelly on the bottom
Layered ice cream and chili jelly