Saturday, August 30, 2008

Foodies Protest the end of Summer...

... with Ice Cream!

When you're born in summer (like me!), ice cream and frozen treats are in your Top 5. In fact in my family, it's not a birthday cake unless it's ice cream cake. (Mine had a crab piped on it.) Sooo, recently…

I've become obsessed. And, reading David Lebovitz’ The Perfect Scoop isn't helping. Lebovitz is an enabler. And, my sister is the pusher…

It all started with the gift of ice cream machine. In July, an innocent little package arrived from my sister for my birthday. It sat in the box for over a month until I bought David’s book, and I started off making some gelato…

NOW, I go out of my way to buy organic heavy cream and obsess over cacao content. I arrange my schedule to account for canister freezing and custard chilling times. I catch myself at work wondering things like, How do you really clean a fine mesh sieve? (Seriously, does anyone know?)

But, after early forays into gianduja gelato, blueberry and vanilla frozen yogurts and Vietnamese coffee ice cream, I still wasn’t completely satisfied. Despite all the straining, stirring and sweating, there was something missing. To feel like an ice-cream-making success, I needed to reach a point where obsession became taste revelation…French-style Chocolate Ice Cream is it. For Lebovitz’ recipe, I turned to my all-time favorite California chocolatiers: Scharffen Berger semisweet 60% & bittersweet 72% and Guittard dutch-process cocoa. (My kind of summer triple-play.) The results were surprising yet when you think about it obvious. Creamy, custardy, soft yet dense, California-style intense chocolate flavor... fruity acidity and that dark choco bite...trademark Scharffen Berger. (Made lickable!) Devour with waffle cookies.

Here's some Frozen Fun Trivia...Straight from Spicy's Archives:
The first time I had gelato? Circa 1991 in NY's West Village at Rocco's—Italian pistachio with a lacey millefiori cookie. Favorite Italian ice flavor? Rainbow. (Old school. There's one called Blue Hawaii that’s captured my niece's generation.) Best Sorbet I've ever had? Pear-Chardonnay at Gelato Classico in SF's North Beach. Most unusual ice cream I've ever tasted? Bubblegum. I think it’s disgusting. Most unusual ice cream I've ever heard of? American Cheese! (A highlight from kuya’s trip to the PI.) What kind of ice cream I'm making tomorrow? Guinness Milk Chocolate.

Have you been making ice cream, too? (Or, sorbet? Or, a dish of slushy granita?) Let's share some favorite recipes...Please leave a comment for the Spicy Browngirl...

(Look! We're holding ice cream cones!)
(actually, i think we're eating frozen bananas)

other photos (from top down):
Triple-Cali-Chocolate Ice Cream, Spicy's 9th Birthday Cake from Carvel,
Vanilla frozen yogurt made with Straus Yogurt and served with Frog Hollow Farm Peaches,
Rocco's on Bleecker, NYC