Two lifetimes ago, I worked in a restaurant. Many restaurants, actually. And out of the hundreds of evenings I spent walking the floors, slinging giant white plates of hot French/Italian/American food at people, there was one night (just ONE!) when a special Tarte Tatine was offered with, not the predictable vanilla ice cream, but cinnamon ice cream!!!
It left quite the impression on me. The flavor was not subtle at all - it was big - VERY BIG! In fact, it reminded me of a creamy, frozen version of my mother's go-to breath freshener in the '70's - Big Red gum.
Being too young at the time to know an ice cream maker from crock-pot, I bought a half gallon of Dreyer's ice cream, let it soften until I could blend in heaping scoops of spice, and re-froze it. In the morning, I ran to the freezer, (maybe I'd have ice cream with my coffee,) but was shocked to find my half-gallon of ice cream had shrunk during the night to little more than a pints worth. That morning, I was awoken to an undeniable reality of cheaply made, mass produced food: additives. In this case, the additive was a lot of air!
That was a long time ago now, and since then I've tried several brands/versions of cinnamon ice cream, but found them all to only *hint* at the spice. For me to be able to relive that first taste of cinnamon ice cream, that creamy cold scoop of *Big Red*, I needed to take matters into my own hands. Thankfully, it's simple. Here's how I do it:
Cinnamon Ice Cream
1 cup of very cold whole milk
2 cups of very cold whipping cream
3/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cinnamon
1-2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Mix all ingredients and turn in your home ice cream maker per manufacturers instructions. (My ice cream maker is by Cuisinart and I mix it for about 20 minutes before storing it in the freezer for several hours before serving.)