Coconut Ice Cream

In 1950 my Father was a missionary in the Tahiti.  He lived in Tahiti for 2 1/2 years.  He may have left Tahiti, but Tahiti never left him.  He returned as a missionary with my mother again in 1986 then again in 2008.  
He loves the islands and the Polynesian people.  Naturally he is drawn toward tropical tastes and flavors.  He has always loved coconut and pineapple.  I decided to combine the two for a special Father's Day dessert.

Coconut Ice Cream  and Fresh Pineapple Upside Down Cake

To make the coconut ice cream you will only need 4 ingredients.

egg yolks, whipping cream, Cream of Coconut and vanilla.

Place the egg yolks in a medium size bowl. 

Beat the egg yolks until light yellow and until they become thick and the yolks ribbon off of the beaters.

In a medium size sauce pan, heat the whipping cream over medium heat.

Heat until bubbles form around the edges of the pan and the cream begins to steam.

VERY SLOWLY pour the heated cream into the egg yolks, whisking constantly.  This will warm the egg yolks slowly and gently so that the yolks don't cook.  That would be gross.

Pour the egg yolk/cream mixture back into the saucepan and cook over LOW HEAT, stirring constantly.

Cook the mixture just until it coats the back of a spoon.  Dip the spoon into the mixture and draw your finger across the spoon.  If your finger mark leaves a path or line, it is finished.  DO NOT cook any longer or the egg yolks WILL cook.

Pour this mixture through a fine mesh strainer and into a large bowl.  This will strain out any bits that may have cooked.  You want the custard to be very smooth and creamy.

This is "Cream of Coconut".  It has sugar added to it and is generally found in the drink mix section of the grocery store.  

You will notice as you open the can of cream of coconut that there is a solid layer on the top.  Underneath this solid layer is liquid.  Be careful while stirring into the thick layer.  I have had the liquid just gush through and make sticky mess.  

Add the cream of coconut to the custard. 

Add the vanilla and stir well. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate over night.

If you make the custard early morning you could probably have it chilled well enough to use in the evening.  I still think that refrigerating ice cream mixtures overnight will give you greater volume.

You will need an ice cream maker.  This mixture will make about 2 quarts of ice cream.  

If you are using a table top maker like this Cuisinart, make sure you have placed the freezing bowl in the freezer for at least 24 hours.  I'm serious about this!  24 HOURS.

This is my custard that I have chilled overnight.  Remove the plastic wrap and stir.

Turn the ice cream maker on and pour the custard into the frozen bowl.

The ice cream should be ready in about 25 minutes.  Don't let the ice cream maker run longer than 30 minutes.  If you do, the ice cream will begin to thin because the frozen bowl has begun to thaw.

Before you remove the dasher from the ice cream, make sure that you are in the kitchen alone.
Now you can lick the ice cream off of the dasher without having to share.  

**Helpful hint:  After the ice cream has been mixing for about 10 minutes it will be the consistency of  shake.  I take a straw and stick it into the mixture and suck!  Such a great treat to the cook.

Remove the ice cream from the freezer bowl and spoon into a different container that can be put into the freezer.  If you leave the ice cream in the freezer bowl that you froze the ice cream in and then put it into the freezer, it will take an ice pick to scoop out.  Not a good idea.

Cover and place in the freezer until ready to serve.

If you would like to garnish the ice cream with toasted coconut...and you do, sprinkle 1 cup of flaked or shredded sweetened coconut onto a baking sheet.

Put into a 300 degree oven for about 7-10 minutes.

Stir every 5 minutes.  Don't do a load of laundry.  Just stay right by that oven because once the coconut begins to brown it will turn quickly and can be burnt in just a second or two.

Garnish the ice cream with toasted coconut.  Even better serve with Fresh Pineapple Upside Down Cake.

This ice cream is extremely cream and rich.  You did just put in 6 egg yolks and use cream.  It will fill like satin in your mouth.

Coconut Ice Cream

6 egg yolks
2 cups cream
1 15 ounce can Cream of Coconut
2 teaspoons vanilla

In a medium size mixing bowl, beat egg yolks until light yellow and thickened.  Set aside.  Bring cream to a simmer over medium heat.  Heat just until bubbles form around the edges and steam starts to rise from the cream.  VERY slowly pour hot cream mixture into egg yolks whisking constantly.  Return mixture back to the sauce pan and cook over low heat until the mixture coats the back of a spoon.  Pour through a fine mesh strainer into a large bowl. Add cream of coconut and vanilla.  Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.  

Mix ice cream according to the directions of the manufacturer.  If using a Cuisinart type ice cream maker, make sure the bowl has been frozen for at least 24 hours.  While the machine is running pour the ice cream custard into the frozen bowl.  Freeze for 25-30 minutes.  Remove from ice cream bowl to another container and freeze until firm.  Makes 2 quarts of ice cream.

The coconut ice cream in Tahiti is amazing!  Especially the ice cream on the island of Raiatea.  Good times...good times.  


  1. Great recipe & photos - I just wanted to point out that in the recipe instructions, you forgot to add the line with the addition of the cream of coconut to the egg/cream mixture. I will be making this tomorrow. Thank you.