We have a new Ice Cream Shop in Denver called Twisted Cream and they inspired me to create this ice cream. Alcohol in ice cream? More please!
You may remember when I traveled to Italy a few years ago that I fell in love with Limoncello and the home of Limoncello, Sorrento. As I started to think of all the liqueurs I could turn into ice cream, limoncello immediately popped into my head.
I have never made ice cream with alcohol and let’s just say I didn’t go about it the right way. In my mind, the more alcohol the better, right? Duh, alcohol doesn’t freeze real well due to its… alcohol! I had to add way more milk than I would have liked to get it the right consistency and probably should have added even more but let me just say this is frozen and perfectly potent. The true essence of my favorite liqueur!
While there are many very wonderful places for dessert in Seattle, two of my favorites are Molly Moon Ice Cream and Top Pot Doughnuts (I know that doughnuts are considered a breakfast, but since they’re truthfully fried cake with frosting, I tend to consider them a dessert). A few weeks back, we went to dinner with our friends, and rather than eat dessert at the restaurant, we decided to head to Molly Moon for our treat. As we walked out, my friend Aimee commented that, in her neighborhood, Molly Moon and Top Pot happened to be right next door to one another. And why, Aimee mused, had they not joined forces? Why had no one created a doughnut ice cream?
I’ve always known that Aimee was smart, but this (obviously) took my understanding of her brilliance to a new level. I know how to infuse flavors into ice creams, why should doughnuts be any different?!
I used to be wildly opposed to incorporating fruits into desserts. To me, the inclusion of fruit meant the exclusion of two of the world’s most wonderful foods – chocolate and peanut butter. And you couldn’t tell me that a fruit-and-chocolate something made sense. It doesn’t. If there’s more fruit, then there’s less chocolate. So stop it.
And then I got into a relationship with a man who grew up eating, and ultimately worshipping, fresh-fruit pies. And makes statements like, “I can’t eat that brownie, it’s too much chocolate” (I think we can all take a moment to acknowledge my maturity in not immediately kicking him to the curb. I mean really, too much chocolate?! Gah!!) However, I can acknowledge that the first time I had one of the pies his mother bakes, well, I discovered something kind of amazing. And it did open me up to the possibility that fruit can be good in desserts – maybe I don’t have to order it myself when we’re out, but I also don’t have to disparage it when it happens (I know, my maturity is unparalleled…)
That being said, I still don’t really believe in fruit ice creams (see above comments about chocolate and peanut butter, and add in some thoughts about salted caramel). But with Strudel and Streusel’s ice cream month in full swing, a freezer full of blackberries, a great base for an ice cream recipe, and an extremely enthusiastic partner, I forged ahead. And you know what?! Darn thing is actually pretty tasty. Truthfully, it’s delicious – creamy, tart, and satisfying, the ice cream feels perfect for summer and has helped me (almost) understand the desire.
Are you getting ready for summer? I certainly am! Although this post is not going to help me fit into my bikini. Neither are the subsequent posts we have for you this month. Strudel and I thought what better way to get you ready for summer than to tempt you with ice cream. I was so committed to this month’s theme that I went out and bought a new ice cream maker.
For many years I’ve owned the kind of machine that you pack with ice and rock salt. It was a pain and I never made ice cream, which I am now realizing was a good thing. My new Cuisinart ICE-30BC makes it so easy I could make it everyday!
Maybe I should stick to every other day.
I got the idea for this ice cream driving to work Friday morning.
I’ve been mulling over what to make for the last installment of cake month here at Strudel and Streusel… lots of ideas have been floating around in my brain, but everything was either too fancy (I’ve been feeling pretty lazy lately) or uninspired (I attempted a single-serving mug cake and it was a disaster; I won’t return to that for a while).
And then, seriously, I had a dream about carrot cake cupcakes. I have no idea why – I don’t think that during my conscious hours I’ve been thinking about cupcakes or carrots much (at least, not more than usual). But I took that as an (extremely helpful!) sign that my dream should be my inspiration for this week’s post (as an aside, I don’t remember any context of the dream – which is probably a good thing, since hearing about people’s dreams usually isn’t very interesting…)
Since I remain hyper aware that summer is creeping toward us, I made these cupcakes low-fat… and then I added the frosting. So we won’t call them healthy or low-fat, but we will acknowledge their attempt at balance, with the lower fat cake and the higher fat frosting.
Even though we got snow this week here in Denver, Spring is certainly in the air. My grass is growing like crazy along with all my Iris and Lily plants. The ducks dart out of their pin every morning in search of worms in the yard! This wonderful change of season inspired me to make these cute little cakes.
Not sure why but when I think of Spring I think of bridal showers and brunches and these cakes. I have never been one for a big slice of cake. I prefer to eat my cake as a cupcake or better yet, a petit four. I have never been brave enough to attempt these little bites and this week I finally mustered up enough courage to give them a try. Not sure what I was waiting for because they are actually quite fun (and not too difficult) to make. Admittedly, the poured fondant icing requires a little patience and being OK with making a huge mess! They are so pretty and dainty that I think they are worth the effort.
Spring is springing into Seattle, thankfully. We’re inching toward the good stuff this town has to offer – for me, that’s the long summer days and the delicious fruit the season brings (and soon it’ll be time to plant tomatoes! Though that’s for another post, since we’re not quite there yet).
I’ve started to see some early blackberries in the grocery, and while those aren’t PNW blackberries, they do hint of what’s to come… and reminds me that we still have two large ziplock bags of laboriously hand-harvested blackberries (plucked from their thorny plants by yours truly but mostly by the partner of yours truly) taking up space in my freezer. Brandon – who feels protective of our crop of this beloved fruit – is also a sucker for anything that includes blackberries. When Streusel suggested that we April be cake-themed month, I immediately thought of making a healthy-ish cake with our hoarded summer fruit – not only would it be delicious, it would also help me empty my freezer in preparation for summer (since I’ll obviously need to space again come the end of the season).
Strudel and I feel like CAKE this month. How about you?
I’ve made and eaten lots of cake in my time but none is easier or tastier than this cake! I recently learned about this cake from a colleague visiting my work from Pennsylvania. His grandmother used to make this cake and when I made it for him he said this one tasted just like hers.
This recipe comes from The Candlelight Inn, a bed and breakfast in Lancaster County, PA. Shoofly Pie and Shoofly Cake are classic Pennsylvania Dutch desserts. I love how easy this recipe is and that it gets its rise simply from baking soda! If you need a quick cake (prep to table in under an hour) to bring to a brunch, give this one a try. The rich molasses taste and the crumb topping make it hard to stop eating. There will be no need to shoo any flies away from this cake!
In the spirit of collaboration (and handily coinciding with Strudel and Streusel’s Happy Hour month), my good pal Stephanie has triumphantly returned to blogging in the most glorious of ways – with a wine tasting! And when you’re testing four different wines (plus maaaybe a few more after the official tasting), you obviously need food to soak up all that wine. What’s a Strudel to do but help out a friend?
Stephanie hosts these events every few months, and this month we tasted Pinots… which, for my purposes, meant that I needed to pair foods that specifically go with, and bring out the flavors in, Pinot Noirs. (Let’s be real – the tasting gave me an excuse to make a few butter-packed foods that I’ve been wanting to try out for a while, but needed an audience of eaters, since I can’t be trusted with said foods in my own house).
Before we get to the food, let’s first talk about My Wine Tribe, and why it’s rad. Stephanie started up her blog a few years back to better inform folks about wine and help people understand what flavors they’re drawn to. She’s got a great quiz that puts you into a “tribe” – a grouping of wines that speak to your own palate. She hosts these tastings every few months to give people to the opportunity to learn how to better identify the wines they enjoy. For this tasting, the four Pinots she chose cost between $18-$95 (i.e. I got to taste a $95 bottle of vino!). More on the tasting after the link.
Oh, and also – these Salmon Crackers with Herb Spread went over very well!
This week I thought I would put the alcohol in the Happy Hour treat! Last Christmas my friend Cristy bestowed upon me the wonderful gift of Booze Balls! Some had rum, some brandy and other’s had bourbon. They were little bites of potent tastiness.
I recently went to Mexico, where in the Cancun airport, I bought some Tequila Cakes for co-workers. It was after trying these cakes I thought I needed to make something sweet with Tequila in it! Hence this adaptation from Fine Cooking’s Holiday Rum Balls.