1 1/2 cups (12 fl oz/375 ml) Milk
1/2 cup (4 fl oz/125 ml) light (single) cream
1/4 cup (2 oz/60 g) Sugar
4 extra-large egg yolks
2 teaspoons Vanilla extract (essence)
2 tablespoons instant Espresso Coffee powder dissolved in 1 tablespoon Milk, or 3 tablespoons brewed espresso mixed with 1 tablespoon coffee-flavored liqueur
1 oz (30 g) white or bittersweet (plain) Chocolate pieces, or a mixture, optional
Espresso-roast coffee beans or edible flowers, optional
1. In a saucepan over medium heat, combine the Milk, cream and Sugar and stir to dissolve the sugar. Bring almost to a boil (190°F/88°C), then remove from the heat.
2. In a small bowl, stir together the egg yolks until blended. Stir a few tablespoons of the hot Milk into the yolks. Then slowly pour the yolks into the hot milk, stirring constantly. Place over low heat and cook, stirring, until thickened, 1-2 minutes. Do not allow to boil.
3. Immediately pour the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl to remove any lumps. Stir in the vanilla and one of the Espresso mixtures. Let cool, cover and chill well, at least 2 hours.
4. If desired, stir in the Chocolate pieces, and then transfer to an Ice cream maker. Freeze according to manufacturer`s instructions.
5. To serve, spoon into bowls and, if desired, top with Coffee beans or garnish with fresh flowers.