Pour the milk into a large metal bowl, place a strainer over the top, and set aside. If you have an instant-read thermometer, have it handy. Place the egg yolks in a medium bowl set on a damp towel to stabilize it.
Combine the cream, maple sugar, and salt in a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan and place over medium heat. Warm, stirring occasionally, until the cream is hot and steamy. Remove from the heat. Note that the acidic maple sugar might make the cream look curdled, but don't panic - the custard will become silky smooth during the next steps.
Whisking constantly with one hand, pour the hot dairy very slowly into the yolks. This is called tempering, and prevents the yolks from scrambling. Pour the mixture back into the pot and set the pot over low heat. Cook, stirring constantly with a heatproof silicone spatula, scraping the sides and bottom of the pot, until the custard just begins to “stick” (or form a thickened film) on the bottom of the pot (you may have to tilt the pan to see it), or registers 170ºF on an instant-read thermometer, 3-5 minutes.
Immediately pour the custard through the strainer and into the cold milk and stir to combine. Place the bowl in an ice bath to chill it quickly (or cover and chill in the refrigerator until very cold, at least 4 hours and up to 1 day).
Once the ice cream base is cold, optionally place in the freezer for 15-30 minutes to get it really cold, stirring once or twice (this way the ice cream will take less time to churn, resulting in a denser, creamier ice cream). Pour the base into your ice cream maker and process as per the manufacturer’s instructions. Mine takes about 20 minutes to churn.
When the ice cream is finished churning, scrape it into a container. Press a piece of parchment paper directly onto the surface (this will discourage crystals from forming), cover tightly and freeze until firm, at least 2 hours. Homemade ice cream is best within the first week of being made, but will keep for a month or two in the freezer. To serve, let it soften for a few minutes at room temperature, and drizzle with a bit of maple syrup if you like.
This ice cream free of refined sugars and made with few ingredients, so be sure to use the highest quality dairy and eggs you can find.Maple sugar is a splurge, but it's the sweetener to use here - maple syrup will result in a more icy ice cream that won't have the same creamy mouthfeel. If maple syrup is what you've got, try making this Maple Bourbon Pecan Ice Cream instead. I use the ice cream maker attachment for my KitchenAid stand mixer and it works like a charm.Nutritional values are based on one of eight servings.