Split open vanilla bean and scrape with butter knife. Reserve both vanilla beans and shell. Combine milk and heavy cream in a medium saucepan. Place over low heat, allow to warm to barely a boil (milk can steam but cannot boil). Toss vanilla beans into warming milk. Add the entire bean to steep as milk warms. Allow milk and beans to steep for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, combine eggs, egg yolks and sugar in a metal mixing bowl (something with some weight), and whisk thoroughly.
Remove pod from warming milk - you want milk mixture to be at about 150 degrees F in order to combine it with the egg mixture, so you may want to turn off burner, mixing constantly to allow mix to cool slightly. Once milk is at desired temperature, use heatproof measuring cup with a spout to take about a cup out of the pot. While whisking sugar/egg mixture, slowly pour in warm milk. (You may want to put the bowl on a rubber pad so it doesn't spin and splatter everywhere while doing this.)
NotesBe sure not to dump milk into eggs for fear of flash cooking them, which will result in an ice cream that tastes like an omelette. Pour combined egg/milk mixture back into pot, turn burner on low, and while whisking constantly, allow mix to warm for a minute or two. You want it to thicken slightly, until it coats the back of a spoon. Pour in a heat-safe bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for 4 hours or overnight. After the mixture has chilled, run through a standard ice cream maker according to factory directions.
Series: Kitchen Conspirators
Episode: Fall Harvest Cuisine (Ep. 3: Part 6)