Ice Cream that high-fives your taste buds.

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Blue Graham

‘Tis the season for those little bundles of blue bites of berry. (yeah that’s right I just typed that) Blueberries are great, they are so mysterious…they have this semi-thick  blue/violet skin that pretends to be tough but inside they have this clear-ish mild filling gel.

blueberry x-ray

I made blueberry ice cream last year but was still getting down the whole texture thing so I wanted to try it again this year with a few modifications. The first being obviously the vanilla beans I’m obsessed with it,  some lemon, and GRAHAM CRACKERS. Cinnamon and blueberries are a great combo so I opted for the “cinnamon” variety of graham crackers and had a blast eating them along the way. They are like slabs of edible sand paper that carves a nice nestled spot of delicious on your taste buds. (wow I am wordy today).

graham cracker stack

graham crackers mugshot

Fact: Loved this. I brought it into work and my cubicle friends really like it as well..perfect for a semi-summer day in SF. The key to making anything with fruit is to make sure it’s fresh and this was indeed a fresh group of blueberry pearls.

Blue Graham Scoop

I had to…they are my new thing…blue graham bites!

blue graham bite

Sprinkle Face

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Spiked Strawberry Bites

Yep. I did. I truly turned into 5 years old with this one. Well minus the whole alcohol part. Strawberries are  in season and I wanted to take full advantage so I picked up some of nature’s edible armor. Strawberries look like they are always ready to battle with their chain link pattern of seeds, but this guy was no match for what I had in store for it…I got it drunk.

strawberry mugshot

tough guy was no match for the blender either…

strawberry guts

After a quick trip to the blender, I took the strawberry guts for a night on the town…we painted the town red..[hardy har har…lame joke].  I was ordering strawberry guts shots of this wonderful whipped cream vodka that absolutely tastes like whipped cream, it’s light with a subtle vanilla flavor. I then threw strawberry guts a party and put on their most special birthday suit…SPRINKLES!

spiked strawberry bite

the entire bite is in cupcake form…

blue strawberry bite friend

strawberry bite party

I had leftover Lemonilla and mixed some of that into a handful of the bites..and me oh my what a combo! Here are the parental units of that pairing…

Spiked Strawberry and Lemonilla

one last outfit…

Spiked Strawberry on a Lemon Cupcake

This strawberry is quite the model…next is a training session with Tyra.


Clementinilla

This flavor was for a tough critic, one that drives me up a wall sometimes with her brutal honesty….she’s a real B-I….RTHDAY GIRL! It was for me and my 29th year of existence!

29 is going to be neat! right?

I found it odd I was making it for me, but I was actually making it for my birthday party so I wasn’t going to be the only one who indulged.  My favorite flavors growing up were bubble gum, orange sherbet, cookie dough and Dairy Queen vanilla soft serve. I don’t have the same adoration for bubble gum as I did when I was 9 so I opted for my true favorite, orange-ish and vanilla bean.

 

Unicorn Ice Cream

I used clementines because I think they have so much more flavor and juice than oranges. I don’t like to brag but I can pick out the juiciest clementine in the bunch. After having to peel 4 lbs of clementines earlier in the year I know my way around the jr. fruit. Tip: If you can peel the skin easily and there’s significant space between the skin and the fruit itself, it’s drier than your mouth after a night of drinking so STAY AWAY.

Clementinilla

I loved this flavor, really came out exactly how I wanted. It tasted like a creamy form of Orange Julius minus the mall rat feel. I remember eagerly circling Orange Julius as a young one, pacing as I could not wait to maneuver my straw in that froth of orange vanilla playground.

This is one of my favorite pictures because by the looks of it I had a great 5th birthday. I don’t think I can approach or achieve another birthday with this much excitement and eagerness but  here’s to another good one 24 years later.

My brother and I keeping it real in '86


Candy Corn Ice Cream (Part II)

You know the drill. Whether you like it or not, candy corn IS Halloween. I think those cheap plastic masks are secretly made out of candy corn…the aroma and fumes those things give off is scary in itself.

Candy Corn Mugshot

I call this Part II because this was one of my first experiments last year and boy what a difference a little practice and selection of right vanilla beans can do. Last year I didn’t use any “creaming” aid, meaning ingredients that help ice cream get their creamy edge  such as egg yolks or corn starch.  I also used vanilla extract last year… GASP!  This year I did a few new things, first is I used a few tablespoons of corn starch to make sure this ghoul was soft and creamy. The major difference though is that I bought a new batch of vanilla beans.  I was using Tahitian beans for awhile and read up a little about vanilla and thought I would try Madagascar vanilla beans. There’s a difference you ask? Switching to Madagascar beans was like switching your bed sheets to fresh ones straight from the dryer. INCREDIBLE. There’s no going back after this. They are so much sweeter, warm, and fresh tasting…they are like the perfect Tetris piece to ice cream.

Candy Corn Ice Cream

In addition to the new vanilla beans, I also added broken up pieces of honey graham crackers which added a nice mellow flavor to the sweet heap of Halloween. I have made about 3 batches (6 pints) of this flavor so far this season and the only thing that’s stopping me is Walgreens and their inventory of candy corn.


Cool Kid Peppermint

This flavor is so cool it makes hipsters jealous. All it needs is a pair of skinny jeans, straight bangs and an American Apparel t-shirt and this thing is official.

hipster ice cream

I’m getting ahead of myself. I made this flavor for a friend’s birthday party per his request. I had these wonderful broken pieces of candy cane bits  and finally put them to good use.

candy cane mugshot

For the base I used a good helping of peppermint schnapps for two reasons:

  1. Flavor:  I didn’t think the bits would be enough, I wanted the base to really taste like peppermint on its own.
  2. Creamy Factor: Alcohol doesn’t freeze and is a great additive to ice cream and sorbets because it keeps ice cream from fully freezing. I didn’t use any egg yolks or corn starch on this cool kid because of the alcohol and like a good fake ID it did the trick.

The consistency was creamy, a little sticky, but everything stuck together like a cool clique hanging out by lockers. The candy cane bits were a nice refresher at the end and gave it a nice crunch. I really enjoyed this cool flavor and it was a nice accompaniment to a chocolate cupcake which was served all together at the party.

Peppermint Ice Cream

I would adore nomming this on a cold winter night, with snow falling in the background but I’m cool with eating it on any given breezy San Francisco night.

Cool Kid

 


Cocomango Resort

I hate “sitting” in the sun and cooking in its Weber grill of ultraviolet rays so with that, I’m not really a “beach person.”   That all changed with this flavor, it was like an edible beach resort minus the tacky shirts.

Coconut Mugshot

Coconut is refreshing, cool, unique, complex and with street cred like this it was time to play around with it. My goal was for the flavor to not taste like sunscreen and while I poked around looking at recipes, I looked to the all mighty David Lebovitz for his take. I tweaked it slightly as I didn’t want to toast the coconut, because I don’t really like toasted flavor things.  I ended up blending cream, sugar,  milk and one cup sweetened coconut flakes in a pot and let that warm for a little bit then infuse for about an hour. I drained the coconut shreds and added one more cup of cream and let that warm again while I prepared two tbsp of corn starch. I’m still on this corn starch kick because I love how it doesn’t affect the flavor of the base whereas egg yolks (depending on the flavor of the ice cream can affect the flavor.)

For me coconut is a wing man, a Robin, a Ben Affleck, I get bored with its flavor when its by itself so I paired it with the Matt Damon of fruits, the Mango.  Sturdy, independent, wonderful and talented are all traits I see in the mango so I made a really small batch of sorbet and swirled it in.

Mango Mugshot

The coconut dominated, but the mango was there to be supportive on coconut’s quest to transform your mouth from a sandy hot dessert to a cool, breezy beach resort.  The texture was soft and cloud-like, extremely easy to scoop and very creamy. Who needs a sunburn from sitting in the sun when you scoop out a couple dollops of edible aloe?

Cocomango Resort


Mangood Sorbet

Man this was good mango sorbet, hence the name. This was a request from a pal at work who at first claimed “oh I don’t want any ice cream.” Ew. She got sense back in her and requested mango sorbet:

Mango Mugshot

I love the skin of a mango, it’s like a hypercolor shirt, each day it could be a different color. My latest goal for sorbets is trying to make them creamier and less icy. I researched and found only  a handful of suggestions: increase the sugar, use alcohol or use some chemical sugar thing.  I actually try to use less sugar than most recipes call for in sorbets because I want the fruit to come out more and I don’t think it really needs it.  Alcohol does work effectively but I tried something new this time, salt. It makes sense because think about when it snows and you want to melt the ice quickly, you throw salt on there. Granted this is edible salt but still it gets in there to break up the freezing process. EUREKA!

Mangood Sorbet

This photo is a wee bit deceiving, it wasn’t THIS wet and shiny. I took it about 15 minutes after I made it so it was glistening like Edward Cullen in the sun.  Mangood did hold up though and was creamy after hours in the freezer. Would definitely make this again and would like to try it as a swirl with vanilla bean.