Finally, it is getting just a tad bit warmer in this great state of Illinois. Warm enough that I am daydreaming about making ice cream again. Whenever I set out to make a new ice cream, I always am torn-do I make the richer, creamier custard style ice cream or the simpler, less time consuming Philly style?
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The main difference? Custard is make with eggs, usually just the egg yolks which are cooked with the cream until they thicken. This results in a thicker, creamier ice cream that doesn't get as icy in the freezer. Philadelphia style is made with just cream or a combination of cream and milk (and sugar of course).
How do I decide? Usually it's a time and ingredients factor. If I have a lot of time and am making a pure flavor (like vanilla) I will typically make a custard. If I am adding a lot of mix-ins and am a bit tighter on time or energy, it's Philadelphia style all the way. Homemade ice cream tastes so much bette than store bought ice cream anyway, it doesn't make a huge difference which you choose.