Rum soaked cherries make this ice cream an extra-special treat for adults, but it is equally delicious with the alcohol omitted. Serve on its own or with a drizzling of hot fudge!
Makes a little over one quart of ice cream.
Combine cherries and 1/3 cup granulated sugar in a medium saucepan. Simmer over medium heat, stirring, until cherries have begun to soften and juices are a syrup-like consistency, about 8-10 minutes.
Strain syrup into a bowl and set aside. Place cherries in a separate bowl and stir in rum. Cool both syrup and rum-soaked cherries to room temperature, then refrigerate, covered, until well-chilled.
Whisk together egg yolks and remaining 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar in a medium bowl. Gradually whisk about one third of the warm milk into the yolks. Return yolk mixture to the pot, stirring to combine. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring, until the custard is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Do not boil.
Strain custard through a fine mesh sieve into a large bowl and stir in vanilla extract. Let stand at room temperature for about 10 minutes. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until well-chilled, at least 4 hours, preferably overnight.
When ready to churn, stir reserved cherry syrup into the custard. Freeze according to your ice cream maker's directions until a soft-serve consistency is reached, adding reserved cherries (and any accumulated juices/rum) during the last 4 minutes of churning.
Transfer to a freezer safe container, cover with plastic wrap, and freeze until ice cream is firm and scoopable, at least 4 hours.