Why am I on an ice cream making kick in the middle of winter? Because we haven’t had a real winter (yet) this year in New York, and some of this past week distinctly felt like spring. Because I’m nevertheless tired of bundling up and want to sit in front of the heater in a t-shirt and pretend it’s summer. Because I discovered the magic of The Perfect Scoop. Because I like ice cream. A lot.

And as ice creams go, this is sort of a heartier flavor, if you will. And if you want to get into the spirit of St. Patrick’s Day in a civilized way (you know, without actually going to a pub and getting stupid drunk to celebrate the arrival of Christianity in Ireland), then this might be the dessert for you. You can still wear that bright green shirt you’ve been hiding in the bottom of your closet! And if you’ve given up ice cream for lent, apparently tradition rules that you can take a break and indulge for a day.

This is a variation on David Lebovitz’s recipe. It was slightly too sweet for my taste, but very creamy and flavorful. Here’s the recipe as I made it. You could always cut out some of the sugar.

Double Chocolate Stout Ice Cream

Makes 1 qt (1 liter)

7 oz. milk chocolate, finely chopped or chips

1 cup whole milk 

1/2 cup sugar

pinch of salt

4 egg yolks

1 cup heavy cream

1/4 cup stout (Guiness or your favorite microbrew)

1 tsp. vanilla

4 oz. dark chocolate

Set the milk chocolate aside in a large bowl and place a mesh strainer over the bowl.

In a saucepan, warm the milk, sugar and salt. In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks. While whisking, slowly pour the warm milk into the yolks, then pour everything back into the saucepan.

Over medium heat, stir the mixture constantly with a rubber spatula. When it thickens and coats the spatula, pour it through the strainer, into the milk chocolate. Stir until everything is incorporated. Whisk in the cream, stout and vanilla.

Chill thoroughly in the refrigerator, then freeze in your ice cream maker following the manufacturer’s instructions.

In the microwave, or over a hot water bath, melt your dark chocolate and let cool a bit (not to the point of it getting thick, but enough not to melt your ice cream).

As you transfer your ice cream to a plastic container, keep drizzling in the dark chocolate, breaking it up as you press the ice cream into the container.