The Dude


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Ample Hills Creamery

Ample Hills Creamery

By Brian Smith and Jackie Cuscuna

Published 2014

  • About

At Ample Hills, we’d like to think that if The Dude from The Big Lebowski staggered into the shop, he’d approve of his namesake flavor. His drink of choice, a White Russian, consists of vodka and coffee liqueur. We make it by steeping freshly ground coffee beans in milk and adding Brooklyn Republic Vodka. The Dude abides.


  • 2 cups (480 ml) whole milk
  • ¾ cup (75 g) coarsely ground coffee beans
  • ¾ cup (150 g) organic cane sugar
  • ½ cup plus 3 tablespoons (80 g) skim milk powder
  • 2 cups (480 ml) heavy cream
  • 3 egg yolks
  • ¼ cup (60 ml) vodka


    1. Prepare an ice bath in the sink or in a large heatproof bowl.
    2. In a large saucepan, heat the milk over medium-high heat until it starts to steam, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the coffee. Cover the pan and let the coffee steep for 10 minutes. Pour the mixture through a cheesecloth-lined wire-mesh strainer into a bowl. Return the coffee-infused milk to the saucepan.
    3. Add the sugar and skim milk powder. Stir with a hand mixer or whisk until smooth. Make sure the skim milk powder is wholly dissolved into the mixture and that no lumps remain (any remaining sugar granules will dissolve over the heat). Stir in the cream.
    4. Clip a candy thermometer to the saucepan and set the pan over medium heat. Cook, stirring often with a rubber spatula and scraping the bottom of the pan to prevent sticking and burning, until the mixture reaches 110°F (45°C), 5 to 10 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat.
    5. Place the egg yolks in a medium bowl. While whisking, slowly pour ½ cup (120 ml) of the hot milk mixture into the egg yolks to temper them. Continue to whisk slowly until the mixture is an even color and consistency, then whisk the egg-yolk mixture back into the remaining milk mixture.

    6. Return the pan to the stovetop over medium heat and continue cooking the mixture, stirring often, until it reaches 165°F (75°C), 5 to 10 minutes more. Add the vodka and stir to combine.
    7. Transfer the pan to the prepared ice bath and let cool for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Pour the ice cream base through a wire-mesh strainer into a storage container and place in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 hours, or until completely cool.
    8. Transfer the cooled base to an ice cream maker and churn it according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
    9. Transfer the ice cream to a storage container. Serve immediately or harden in your freezer for 8 to 12 hours for a more scoopable ice cream.