Being half Australian and a quarter Kiwi means I’ve had my fair share of flights down under. Now that I’m a bit older, cuddling a koala isn’t the highlight of my trip – it’s the food. And though you might be quicker to think hobbits or sheep when New Zealand comes to mind, there’s a thriving culinary scene happening there, and so many sources of inspiration. Today, I’m teaming up with Air New Zealand to share one of my favorite New Zealand recipes and the opportunity to win the ultimate traveler’s vacation. Just go to their site and fill out your dream itinerary to enter to win. Also, they’re offering special fares starting from $1,098, but the program ends 3/31, so check it out soon!
New Zealand is such a special, beautiful place, and going back there is on my short list of trips I need to do. A glass of Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc in the evening, one of their farm fresh eggs with an electric orange yolk for breakfast, and maybe some herb crusted lamb chops for dinner – yep, that sounds pretty great to me! Also inspired by their national palette, Air New Zealand has added chef-designed menus featuring New Zealand cuisine and wine.
Growing up with Aussie and Kiwi heritage meant that I had access to the world’s best candy (in my opinion), with honeycomb toffee topping the list. It’s not actually made from honey, but by combining toffee with baking soda, you get this wonderful, aerated crunch with a little bit of a salty edge to cut through the toffee. If that doesn’t sound wonderful enough on it’s own, the Kiwis had the inspired idea of folding into ice cream and naming it Hokey Pokey. I love the concept of combining two delicious things and seeing how they pair, and this is a natural match. The toffee keeps it’s crunch well, and is perfect against a simple ice cream, like my vanilla honey flavor today. It’s so delicious, and while eating a pint on the couch isn’t quite the same as traveling to New Zealand, it’s not too shabby either.
3 egg yolks
1/3 cup honey
2 cups honey comb toffee, crumbled (recipe below)
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 cups half and half
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 ounces butter, browned
Melt the butter in a small pot over medium heat until it becomes golden brown. Remove from the heat and allow the butter to cool to room temperature.
Whisk together the egg yolks, honey, 1/4 cup of the honey comb toffee, and salt until smooth. To temper the eggs, carefully whisk about 1 cup of the half-and-half into the egg mixture until smooth. Then whisk the egg mixture back into the half-and-half in the pot. Return to medium-low heat and cook to 170°F, constantly stirring along the bottom of the pot to ensure even cooking. Once it has reached 170°F, remove from the heat and whisk in the vanilla and brown butter. Strain through a fine-mesh strainer into a bowl. Cool the ice cream base, in its bowl, to room temperature in an ice bath, then pop the base into the fridge to fully chill, at least 2 hours.
Once the base is chilled, process it in your ice cream maker. When it’s somewhere between soft serve and ice cream from the freezer, transfer the ice cream to a container and freeze until firm.
INGREDIENTS (HONEY COMB TOFFEE)
unflavored vegetable oil
2 tablespoon baking soda, sifted
1/2 cup strong brewed coffee
3 cups sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
Generously oil a large baking sheet or line with a silicon mat or parchment paper; sift baking soda; set nearby.
Combine coffee, sugar and corn syrup in a heavy, 4-quart saucepan. Place over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until sugar dissolves. When mixture is clear and begins to boil, increase heat to medium-high; cook until mixture reaches 290°F on a candy thermometer. Remove from heat and stir in baking soda (mixture will foam up intensely). While still foaming, pour out onto prepared baking sheet. Do not spread (this will compress it) and let it harden and cool completely (about 30 minutes).