Azuki Red Bean Ice Cream

Always-popular Japanese bean paste blends beautifully with classic American vanilla bean ice cream. This azuki red bean ice cream bridges the best of Japan and America into one creamy delight. The recipe is inspired by and adapted from Saveur magazine.

  • 2 vanilla beans
  • ¾ teaspoon vanilla powder
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 ½ cups milk
  • 1 ½ cups heavy whipping cream
  • 4 ½ tablespoons French vanilla pudding mix
  • 1 cup sweetened red bean paste
  • Drops of pink food coloring

Get out your sharpest knife. Split the vanilla beans and scrape the insides into a bowl. Add ¼ cup of the sugar along with the vanilla powder. Mix well.

Combine the sugar and vanilla mixture with the rest of the ingredients - except the bean paste and food coloring. Whip until slightly custardy and thick.

Pour into a container with a tight lid. Refrigerate overnight.

Churn the custardy mix in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions. After 10 minutes, slide spoonfuls of bean paste into the whirl of creamy goodness. Add a drop or two of pink food coloring, if desired. (Left alone, a very pretty pale shade of lavender appears.)

Once the bean paste is incorporated into the cream mixture, transfer to a Tupperware bowl (or similar container) and freeze overnight.

Have sweet dreams and awaken to a day promising a divine dessert.