Basil and Mint Infused Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream

2 cups whole milk

1 cup granulated sugar

2 cups heavy cream

40 large peppermint or spearmint leaves

12 large basil leaves

generous handful spinach leaves

6 oz 62% semisweet chocolate bar, such as Scharffen Berger

In a small saucepan, combine milk and sugar, bring to a boil over medium heat, stir until sugar dissolves. Transfer to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. 

In a small saucepan, combine cream, mint, and basil, bring to a simmer over medium heat, remove, cover and allow herbs to steep for at least 30 minutes (I let them steep an hour). 

Bring medium saucepan of water to a boil. Meanwhile, fill large bowl or sink with ice. Blanch spinach in boiling water for 30 seconds and then pour into strainer. Quickly place strainer in an ice bath. Lift strainer and wring out excess water from spinach. Place spinach in a blender along with half the milk mixture. Blend well. With blender running, slowly add the remaining milk mixture. 

Pour the resulting green mixture through a cheesecloth lined mesh strainer into a bowl (I didn't have cheesecloth and it worked fine with just the fine mesh strainer). Carefully wring out cheesecloth above strainer to extract remaining liquid. Strain steeped cream through the mesh strainer (without cheesecloth at this point) and stir to combine. Cover and refrigerate overnight until base mixture drops below 40 degrees F. 

Transfer the base mixture to an ice cream maker and allow to churn for 20-30 minutes until base takes on a more whipped consistency. Meanwhile, chop the chocolate bar up into bite sized chunks and/or shavings. Once the ice cream is about completed in the ice cream maker, add the chocolate bits through the top of the ice cream maker, allowing the chocolate to incorporate. Remove finished ice cream and place in a 1 quart covered container. Allow 3-4 hours to harden.