The simplest ice cream recipe requires only four ingredients, mixed together and chilled. Sugar, cream, milk and vanilla extract are added at specific times and mixed in a commercial brand ice cream machine until blended.
While many unique flavor combinations can be mixed to make a variety of ice cream that emulates store brands, the simplest one requires milk, cream, sugar and vanilla extract. Combine 2 1/2 cups milk, 1 cup heavy cream and 3/4 cup white sugar in a saucepan over low heat until a foamy ring appears around the edges. Transfer this mixture into another container, add 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, and chill for 2 hours. This is the point in the process during which you could add fresh fruit, chocolate sauce, jam or nuts to the mixture to add a desired flavor to your ice cream mix.
Place chilled mixture into a commercial style ice cream mixer and mix according to the manufacturer's guide, typically 20 to 30 minutes. When ice cream is frozen and thoroughly mixed, serve immediately or place in the freezer with a piece of plastic wrap stretched tightly across the top to allow ice cream to mature for two to three more hours.