1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
3 cups half-and-half
2 cup sugar
8 to 9 large egg yolks
3 cups heavy cream
Heat half-and-half and 2 cups sugar in a separate saucepan over low heat, adding vanilla “caviar” to the mixture. (You can also drop in the scraped vanilla bean, just to extract all the flavor. Discard before moving to the next step.) Turn off heat when mixture is totally heated.
Add heavy cream to a separate bowl.
Beat egg yolks by hand or with an electric mixer until yolks are pale yellow and slightly thick.
Temper the egg yolks by slowly drizzling in 1 1/2 cups of hot half-and-half mixture, whisking constantly. After that, pour the egg yolk/half-and-half mixture into the pan containing the rest of the half-and-half mixture. Cook over low to medium-low heat (depending on how hot your stove gets) until quite thick, stirring constantly. Drain custard using a fine mesh strainer, then pour into the bowl with the cream. Stir to combine.
Chill mixture completely, then freeze in an ice cream maker until thick. Place container in freezer to harden for at least eight hours.
Serve with something chocolate! Or, if you’re in a bind, serve with blackberry cobbler. (I won’t tell anyone.)