Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Visual Noms

Check out these fantastic ice cream photos!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Chocolate Bowls?! HELLO.

Chocolate Bowls made with Balloons. This is sheer brilliance at its finest. Best way to serve ice cream ever.

Check it out at:

Friday, September 2, 2011

#19 Strawberry Lemonade

Sorry for the FOREVER delay in posting, but after much (probably forgotten) anticipation, here it is: STRAWBERRY LEMONADE. This ice cream is partly inspired by my coworker, Lizsl, who was inspired by the McDonald's ad for their strawberry lemonade slushy drink (but obviously my ice cream is WAY better) and partly because I had tried this Strawberry Champagne Cocktail recipe one night and found pureed strawberries to be so tasty and amazing.

Luckily strawberries happened to be on sale at the local grocery store. So with strawberries in hand and a few freshly squeezed lemons, this ice cream came to be.

It's actually a very simple recipe. First, review the cocktail recipe so you can see how to puree strawberries. Then take the following:

1 cup sugar,
32 ounces of strawberries
4 lemons
1 and 1/2 cups cream.

And do this to them:

Put the sugar in a pot.
Puree the strawberries
Juice the lemons (you need approximately 1 cup of fresh lemon juice).

Then add the strawberry puree and lemon juice to the pot with the sugar. Heat on medium to assist the sugar in dissolving. Use the immersion blender to make sure everything is well mixed. Then strain it. TWICE.

Add 1 1/2 cups heavy cream to the strained mixture and then whisk it until thoroughly mixed. Chill it, churn it, enjoy!

See the pictures below. I was having fun with the knife and strawberries. It was basically a strawberry massacre, which might be a good alternative name for this ice cream. It tastes amazing, just like strawberry lemonade. I kind of think it tastes like a fruit roll-up in a way, but that's okay because fruit roll-ups taste wonderful too.

The End.


Monday, May 16, 2011

#18 Salted Caramel

Well, this one has been a long time coming. My coworker, Lizsl, has been requesting it ever since I started making ice cream because it's one of her favorite flavors OF ALL TIME.

The first thing I had to do was figure out how to make caramel. I've never done that before, although I've seen it being made a few times. So I enlisted the assistance of a superstar cook, Travis, who makes awesome caramel popcorn, but it turns out the caramel he makes for the popcorn is corn syrup based rather than sugar based, so we scoured the internet for a real sugar-based caramel recipe that could be transformed into tasty delicious ice cream!

Earlier in the day I found a salted caramel recipe that I liked, but it was for a more chewy type of caramel candy. The recipe is here: I might try to make these one day, perhaps for someone's birthday in December.

We found a caramel sauce recipe on the same website. I'm not the best baker, but with the help of I think I might just be able bake some tasty treats some day! Her site looks awesome. There's so many yummy-looking recipes on there. Check it out!

Here's the caramel sauce recipe:

1 1/2 cups sugar
1/3 cup water
1 1/4 cups heavy cream

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

AND (my addition) 1 1/2 teaspoons course sea salt

1. Put sugar in saucepan.
2. Cover with water, medium heat, bring to boil, do not stir or disturb.
After about 10 minutes a golden amber color should appear. Well, this didn't happen for me. Instead the sugar began to crystallize. It was very traumatic, like in Return to Oz when you touch the forbidden desert and turn to sand! Only not exactly. We were about to scratch the batch when I had a bout of intuitive inspiration and poured some more water into it and turned up the heat. The sugar crystals dissolved and the golden amber color appeared almost instantly!
4. Add the cream and whisk away! I used the whisking attachment on the immersion blender. This also helped to dissolve the remaining sugar crystals.
After it's well mixed (smooth and silky) then add the vanilla and sea salt.
6. Take off the heat. The sauce thickens as it cools. It cools faster in the refrigerator.

I think this recipe made about 2 cups of caramel sauce.

For the ice cream I used 1 1/2 cups of the salted caramel sauce as the base and then added 3 cups of half & half. Yes, I'm trying half & half this time instead of heavy cream. Just because.

I sprinkled a few course sea salt crystals on top of the ice cream after it had frozen, which added a little extra salty kick. Although I might recommend serving this ice cream with a little sea salt on the side so the devourer can add as much or as a little salt as they desire. This ice cream truly captures the essence of the salted caramel flavor.

According to Lizsl there's only one word that describes it: Heaven!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

#17 Chocolate Peppermint

Going on vacation made me fall a little behind on my one ice cream per week schedule, so I'm going to try and catch up over the next few weeks. To get back into the swing of things I made a simple chocolate peppermint ice cream.

I had one package of German baking chocolate left over from the German Chocolate Cake ice cream, so I threw it into the pot along with the other ingredients from the basic ice cream recipe.

After the chocolate melted I used the immersion blender and mixed everything up until it looked smooth and silky. I was tempted to pour myself a glass of this super sweetened hot chocolate milk, but I resisted. (Although I did taste it a few times more than was necessary. /shameless confession)

Next I added 3 cups of cream and 2 teaspoons of peppermint extract. Also, this happened.

Then I chilled it, churned it, and garnished the chocolate peppermint ice cream with some crushed peppermint candy!
And there you have it.

A simple super-tasty chocolate peppermint ice cream dessert of deliciousness!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Four things I learned tonight while making ice cream...

So, after an awesome two week hiatus in Thailand I'm back and I'm making more ice cream, RIGHT NOW, but first I must share...

Four things I learned tonight while making ice cream:
1) dripping peppermint extract onto a burning stove can cause a rather large flare up of FIRE
2) knocking plastic measuring devices into fire (while in shock) will result in more fire and melting plastic
3) burning peppermint extract smells way better than burning plastic.
4) making ice cream is oddly dangerous...or maybe it's just me!


Monday, April 25, 2011

#16 Harvey Wallbanger

It's a cocktail.

I had no idea. Kip requested this ice cream for his office party as well. According to the interwebs o' knowledge here is a typical recipe for the Harvey Wallbanger drink:

1.5 ounces Vodka
4 ounces Orange Juice
0.5 ounces Galliano Liquor

Shake and serve. You can also garnish it with an orange slice and maybe a maraschino cherry. (And a little umbrella, if you're going to be sitting outside on the beach beneath a larger umbrella...)

Having never had this cocktail before I really had no reference for the flavor. So I winged it.

Alcohol doesn't willingly freeze like water, milk, and cream, so incorporating it into ice cream can be dangerous. So I abstained from adding vodka to the ice cream recipe, but I did use a 1/4 cup of the Galliano Liquor. First I reduced the liquor for about 15 minutes so that most of the alcohol would boil off.

Next I began heating 1 cup of cream with 1 cup sugar, 1/4 teaspoon of salt, 1/4 teaspoon of cornstarch, 1/4 teaspoon of corn syrup, and 1/8 teaspoon of vanilla extract. Once that was heated I added in 2 squirts of fresh lemon juice, 1 cup of fresh orange juice (no pulp), and the remainder of the reduced 1/4 cup of Galliano liquor. Next I added 2 cups of cream and continued to heat and whisk the mixture. Finally, it was chilled and then poured into the ice cream machine, and thus a cocktail turned into ice cream!

Here's what Kip had to say about:

"The Harvey Wallbanger ice cream was really creamy and tasted a lot like the little orange cream cups you get as a kid that you eat with the wooden spoon. It had a hint of the Galliano... it was really, really creamy."

"Too creamy?"

"No, not at all. I think you should hold on to that one. It was really good."

Another positive review! Woohoo! Picture time!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

#15 German Chocolate Cake

Congratulations to Justin who guessed the Sparkle Motion reference and provided the exact quote I was looking for! Justin, let me know your favorite flavor of ice cream AND/OR any crazy flavor you would like to see brought into existence!

This week I made TWO ice creams. One will be featured in this post and one will be featured next week. Both ice creams were made for Kip of Bierkast and his frequent office parties.

The first ice cream Kip asked for was a German Chocolate Cake-like ice cream. DONE.

After researching some recipes on the internet I devised the following recipe which created an uberchocolatey ultracreamy undeniably delicious German Chocolate Cake ice cream.

First I melted 8 ounces of sweet German baker's chocolate in 1 cup of 1% milk. Then I added 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon corn syrup, and a 1/4 teaspoon corn starch, and then a 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon.

Also, I decided that I would use egg yolks in this ice cream because eggs are typically used in cakes. So I beat 4 egg yolks with a heaping 1/2 cup of sugar. Usually I use 1 cup of sugar, but since the chocolate is already sweetened I didn't want the ice cream to be TOO sweet.

When the chocolate milk portion was sufficiently hot I began to temper the egg/sugar mixture with it until I fully incorporated the egg/sugar mixture into the chocolate milk mixture. The eggs did not curdle this time! (Win.) Next I added 3 cups of cream.

And it was nearly complete.

After chilling in the freezer for about 2 hours I strained the mixture as I poured it into the ice cream machine. Then when it was nearly done churning I mixed-in a 1/2 cup of chopped pecans and 1 cup of sweetened coconut flakes. This is a German Chocolate CAKE ice cream after all.

Then I added a layer of pecans and coconut flakes on top of the ice cream before I put it into the freezer to set.

Here's what the customers say:

"The German Chocolate one was awesome too. Really good mixed with the coconut / pecans ... it tasted like dark chocolate ice cream, but the coconut and pecans really made the flavor complete. My coworkers aren't much for words... I heard 'creamy' a lot and 'damn this is good'. If they don't like it they don't eat it. They ate it."

I agree that it did actually taste like chocolate cake. Personally I found the flavor to be very light and creamy, almost mousse like, but maybe that's because it was beginning to melt a little bit.

Today I had ice cream at a local mom and pop shop. One could also say I was doing some market research. Hehe!

I'm going to try something different with the pictures this time... just because there's so many I want to post, so here they are in chronological order!

Friday, April 8, 2011

#14 Sparkle Motion

Imagine, if you will, a person made of sprinkles and glitter and sugar and spice (and everything naughty, err, nice)... what kind of ice cream would you make for that person? Well, I came up with Cinnamon Imperial Jewel Blend Jimmie Rainbow Sanding Sugar Super Sweet Ice Cream. But that's too long to remember. So, this ice cream is called SPARKLE MOTION.

Now, here's a pop culture contest. If you know where Sparkle Motion comes from then be the first to quote it accurately in a comment and I'll make a specialty ice cream just for you!

So this is what happened.

I made the ice cream base (using 1% milk instead of whole) and then melted a 1/2 cup of cinnamon imperial red hots into it. They turned the mixture bright red. It was neat. After they completely dissolved I added in the 3 cups of cream which created a soft pink color. In order to emphasize the cinnamon flavor I added a 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon extract and a 1/4 teaspoon of ground cinnamon. Then just to be safe I added a 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla extract. Throwing in a little vanilla every now and then seems to accentuate the flavor of ice cream.

After the ice cream was pre-chilled in the freezer I put it into the ice cream maker. When it was nearly done I added one cup of the jeweled jimmies.

Finally I topped it off with some rainbow sanding sugar (which quickly began to melt...) and a few remaining cinnamon red hots.

This ice cream tastes remarkably similar to the Imperial Red Hot Blast I made a few weeks ago, but that's the flavor I was going for because the birthday girl said it was her favorite. ;-)

Well, there you have it - the story of a fun, party-rific birthday ice cream for the one and only Tasha, baker of tasty cupcakes and foodie extraordinaire!

Monday, April 4, 2011

#13 Roasted Black Sesame Seed

My awesome colleague Stacie used to make a special ice cream cake for my birthday every year. Layer one: Brownies. Layer two: Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream. Layer Three: Mint Chocolate Chip Ice cream. Delicious. The leftovers would only last for two to three days, which made it seem like my birthday just kept going. Thanks, Stacie, for those wonderful ice cream cakes!

Her birthday was last week, so I decided to make a special ice cream for the occasion. Her favorite flavors of ice cream are: Pistachio Almond, Black Sesame, and Azuki Bean. I went with the black sesame because it sounded the most intriguing.

After perusing a few random recipes on the web, I knew what I had to do. I had to use a lot of black sesames to impart the black sesame flavor. Most recipes out there called for 2-3 tablespoons but that just didn't seem like enough...

So I roasted a 1/2 cup of black sesame seeds at 325 degrees for 15 minutes. Roasting the seeds helps to release their flavor. Then I began preparing the basic ice cream recipe, although this time I substituted 1% milk for the whole milk. I also added a 1/4 tsp of vanilla extract. Next I chopped about half of the roasted black sesame seeds with the mini food processor / spice chopper. That didn't seem to work too well, so the next half of the black sesame seeds were ground up the old fashion way - using a mortar and pestle. Crushing the sesame seeds by hand was much more effective. Plus a mortar and pestle is just a neat addition to any kitchen. (Go get one!)

Anyway, I added the first half of chopped seeds to the ice cream mixture while it was on the stove. Once I was done whisking the mixture I put it in the freezer to rapidly chill, then I moved it to the refrigerator for a couple of hours until I was ready to churn it in the machine.

When it came time to make the ice cream, I strained the mixture to remove the soggy black sesame seed pulp before I poured it into the ice cream maker. As the mixture was nearly finished churning and freezing I added the other half of ground black sesame seeds as a mix-in. My theory is that the mixture siphoned all the flavor out of the black sesame seeds. So by adding a freshly ground batch toward the end of the freezing process there would be more flavor and more crunch to the ice cream.

The outcome was very "cookies n' cream" as you can see!

The flavor of this ice cream is rather nutty - most likely because this ice cream is a bit out there (but in a good way)! Luckily, the last flavor that lingers on your tongue after each bite is the sesame flavor. The cookies n' cream-like composition almost makes you think you're eating a cookies n' cream ice cream at first, but the crunch and flavor of the sesame seeds quickly makes you realize that this ice cream is in fact something else entirely. It went over very well with my coworkers. To emphasize the flavor I added a sprinkling of whole black sesame seeds to the top of the ice cream. Voila!

Thanks for inspiring this ice cream, Stacie!