Always happy to honor your guestbook entries:

Chocolate Ice-Cream "Decadence"

Upon Hal's request, I have translated and adopted the German recipe for Schokoladeneis "Dekadenz" for my American friends and all of my English-speaking "followers." Admittedly, it is not exactly a "lean cuisine" dessert - what dessert is?! ;o) -, but it is "decadently good", a true indulgence. And ... don't you deserve it?!

Sitting in the adjacent cubicle, Hal is a fellow-manager of mine - and from every-day observance, I know one thing for sure: He most certainly does deserve it! And I have a feeling, you do, too! ;o)

Ingredients (makes about 2 pints):

1/2 cup almonds
7 oz. semi-sweet chocolate, divided
1/2 pint heavy (whipping) cream, divided
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 eggs, divided
3/4 cup confectioners sugar
3 tablespoons Mozart liqueur (or any other chocolate cream liqueur)

Tip 1: Should you not own an ice-cream maker, that's not a problem. Just make sure that while the custard is sitting in the freezer, you stir it frequently until it's all frozen. This will prevent the custard from developing ice crystals that tend to give the ice-cream a coarse texture and hinder it from developing its full flavor.

Tip 2: For an even richer and darker chocolate flavor, exchange one or two ounces of the semi-sweet chocolate you melt for unsweetened chocolate.

Preparation (about 45 minutes plus freezing time):

1. Place the almonds in a large, non-stick frying pan and, moving them frequently with a wooden spatula, toast them over medium heat until they turn a nice brown color and give off a nice smell, about 10 to 15 minutes. Let cool slightly and chop very coarsely, set aside.

2. Very coarsely chop the chocolate. Feel free to chop extra chocolate for step 7.

3. In a double boiler, melt 5 oz. chocolate in 5 tablespoons cream. Stir in the vanilla extract and let cool down.

4. In separate bowls, beat both the egg whites (first!) and the whipping cream until stiff.

5. In a third bowl, whisk the sugar into the egg yolks and beat until well combined and densely foamy. Add the chocolate mixture and combine. Carefully incorporate the whipped cream and the beaten egg whites into the chocolate mixture.

6. Freeze in an ice-cream maker according to manufacturer's instruction.

7. In a freezer-safe bowl - I know, it's the fourth bowl ... -, mix the remaining chopped chocolate, the chopped almonds, and the liqueur. When the ice-cream is done, transfer to this bowl and combine the ice-cream with the prepared mixture. The alcohol will cause the ice-cream to melt, so work quickly and put the finished product into the freezer immediately.

Usually I am enjoying this ice-cream on its own. However, it does partner wonderfully with fresh raspberries and/or raspberry sorbet/ice-cream ... Enjoy!