For the first time ever, we're teaching you how to make the perfect custard base from our new Backyard Camping Series flavor: Buttermilk Pancakes, Bacon & Eggs. Griddled blueberry pancakes get smothered in Vermont maple syrup, then combine with crystallized bits of brown sugar bacon before getting lost in rich, custard-y pancake batter ice cream. Go on, get wondrously lost. But make sure to tag us in your homemade scoops on social.

Buttermilk Custard Base

Makes about 2½ pints

½ cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar

2 tablespoons dry milk powder

¼ teaspoon xanthan gum

4 large eggs

2 tablespoons light corn syrup

1 ½ cups heavy cream

1 ½ cups buttermilk

Bacon Praline (recipe follows)

1 buttermilk blueberry pancake, prepared however you choose 

2 tablespoons maple syrup

  1. Combine ½ cup sugar, dry milk powder, and xanthan gum in a small bowl and stir well. In a large bowl, combine eggs yolks and remaining 2 tablespoons sugar and whisk until yolks are lighter in color, about 1 minute.

  1. In a medium pot, combine corn syrup and cream. Add sugar mixture and immediately whisk vigorously until smooth. Set pot over medium heat and cook, stirring often and adjusting heat if necessary to prevent a simmer, until sugar has fully dissolved, about 3 minutes. Remove pot from heat. Begin whisking yolk mixture and continue to whisk constantly while slowly drizzling hot cream into the yolks. 

  1. Add buttermilk and whisk until fully combined. Chill custard base at least 1 hour and up to 24 hours. 

  1. Break pancake into pieces and place in a medium bowl with Bacon Praline and maple syrup and toss until coated. 

  1. Add salt to custard base to taste then immediately pour the mixture into an ice cream maker and turn on the machine. Churn until the mixture has the texture of soft-serve, about 25 minutes. In an airtight container, fill ¾ with custard base, then sprinkle with a layer of Bacon Praline-pancake mixture. Using a spatula, stir until combined. Transfer the base to an airtight container and refrigerate until well chilled, at least 6 hours, or for even better texture and flavor, 24 hours. It can be further stored in the fridge for up to 1 week or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Bacon Praline

Makes about 1 cup

½ cup whole milk

½ cup granulated sugar

½ cup (lightly packed) light brown sugar

⅛ teaspoon vanilla extract

3 slices of bacon, cooked and crumbled

  1. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper and coat lightly with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a medium saucepan, combine milk, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla and stir well. Attach a candy thermometer to pan and set over medium heat. Cook, stirring often, until mixture registers 238ºF on the thermometer. (It’s okay if it starts to crystallize.) Immediately stir in bacon until completely coated. Keep stirring until sugar begins to crystallize and become crumbly, about 20 seconds more.
  3. Remove pan from the heat and let mixture cool until it’s as thick as warm caramel, 5 to 10 minutes. Stir again, then scrape mixture onto prepared sheet pan, spreading it until bacon is in a single layer. Let praline cool to room temperature.
  4. Remove praline from sheet pan, peel off parchment, and crumble praline into approximately ¼-inch pieces. Freeze until cold and use them in the ice cream or transfer to freezer bags and freeze for up to 2 months.