1. Heat the half + half, sugar, and vanilla beans and pod in a medium saucepan over low heat, whisking constantly to avoid a skin forming on the top of the mixture. Turn off the heat when the mixture is just about ready to start simmering – the mixture should coat the back of a metal spoon.
2. Beat the egg yolks by hand or in a stand mixer until slightly thick. Slowly drizzle in about half of the half + half mixture into the eggs, whisking constantly. This is tempering the eggs – if you pour it in too fast, your eggs will scramble… and no one wants Scrambled Egg Ice Cream.
3. Pour the egg mixture back into the pan with the remaining half + half mixture and heat on low or medium-low heat until thick, stirring constantly. It will start to get really thick and custard-like, which is what we are going for! Remove from heat when it begins to simmer.
4. Pour the now custard into a bowl with the heavy whipping cream and stir to combine. Take a piece of plastic wrap and gently press it on to the top of the custard so the entire top surface is covered. This will help prevent it from forming a skin on top. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight. (After 2 hours, mine was not nearly cold enough, so I let it sit until the next day. Just gently touch the top to feel how cold the custard is.).
5. Following the manufacturers directions, freeze in an ice cream maker until it reaches your desired consistency, about 20-30 minutes. Place mixture in an air tight container and place in freezer to harden for at least 8 hours.
7. Before cleaning the blade, lick off every last inch and moan in ecstasy. 8 hours is entirely too long to wait for something this delicious!
8. Top with your favorite toppings, or just eat it plain. IT IS THAT GOOD!