Popcorn Ice Cream

My mom described this ice cream well, saying it tastes a lot like the last bite of a vanilla cone – almost equal parts ice cream and soft, chewy bits. That is my favorite bite of the cone, although surely the saddest. With this flavor, you can experience “the last bite” over and over again. For a Cracker Jack variation, toss in 1/4 C chopped peanuts at the end of the churning process, and serve with caramel sauce.

Makes about 1/2 Quart

5 C plain popped corn (made from heaping 1/4 C unpopped kernels), divided
1 1/4 C milk
1/3 C brown sugar
1/4 tsp salt (omit if using salted popcorn)
1 tsp vanilla
scant pinch of cinnamon, optional
3 tbsp melted butter

In a blender or food processor, blend together all ingredients except for 1 cup of popcorn and the butter. Process about 2 minutes, until very smooth. With the motor on a medium-slow speed, very slowly drizzle in the butter to create an emulsion. Chill mixture completely in the fridge. Churn the ice cream according to your ice cream maker’s instructions, adding in the 1 cup of reserved popped corn at the very last moment. Freeze until firm. Serve garnished with popcorn!

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