Tag Archives: jeni’s splendid ice creams at home

We Cook: Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams at Home – Honeydew, Cucumber, and Cayenne Frozen Yogurt

We have been overrun with cucumbers.

I mean that in quite a literal sense
as the cucumber vines are breaking out of the garden
through our chain link fence
and onto the sidewalk
where everyone in the neighborhood takes their nightly walks.

I hope they take some of the cucumbers as they go by.

In a concentrated effort to use up the cucumbers
I’ve been trying every recipe I find that uses them.

We’ve been pickling
having a lot of cucumber salads
and I have a cucumber risotto coming up on the menu plan.

I’m thankful for the risotto because it uses ten cucumbers
which should put a dent in our supply…
for a few days.

While the frozen yogurt recipe in Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at Home doesn’t call for ten cucumbers
it does call for at least part of one
so I felt it would be appropriate to make Honeydew, Cucumber, and Cayenne Frozen Yogurt
on the heels of The Darkest Chocolate Ice Cream in the World.

Continue reading We Cook: Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams at Home – Honeydew, Cucumber, and Cayenne Frozen Yogurt

We Cook: Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams at Home – The Darkest Chocolate Ice Cream in the World

I purchased Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at Home because I only had one ice cream cookbook
(Lebovitz’ definitive book for the home cook, The Perfect Scoop)
and I thought it was time to try something new.

Splendid Ice Creams does not use eggs in any of its recipes
whereas most of Lebovitz’ ice creams are custard-based.

I prefer a custard base for ice cream
but the egg-free recipes are what interested me about this book from the start.

If you don’t try new recipes
how do you grow?

Bauer writes she doesn’t like to use eggs because they muddle the ice cream’s other tastes
(sounds like another chef I know).

Instead of using xanthan gum,
a typical emulsifier in ice cream recipes without eggs,
she uses cornstarch and cream cheese to thicken the ice cream.

When I was researching the book before I purchased it
her use of cream cheese made me pause for a moment.

I didn’t want the ice cream to taste like cream cheese or cheesecake.

I have a funny relationship with cream cheese.

I like cream cheese
but you’ve never seen me turn a cookbook page so fast
as when cream cheese is in the ingredient list.

I usually think of it as a cheater ingredient
something to “add something”
instead of thinking hard for a moment and figuring out what the dish really needs
(butter? cream? a roux base? salt? sour cream?).

I didn’t say it was a RATIONAL relationship with cream cheese.

The cream cheese only caused a small pause on my end.
Bauer’s not an amateur
and my worry that the ice creams would all taste like flavored cheesecake was fleeting.

Bauer uses cream cheese for its casein proteins
and explains why in a section of the book entitled The Craft of Ice Cream.

It’s an informative section
and also outlines why she uses sugar and corn syrup
(not high fructose corn syrup)
and how cornstarch takes care of the ice cream so it doesn’t become icy.

I’ve not had problems with my custard ice creams becoming icy
even after lounging in the freezer
but I know that some people end up with icy cream instead of ice cream.

I went through Splendid Ice Creams several times before settling on a first recipe.

You’d think that I would start with vanilla ice cream
but I went with chocolate.
Dark chocolate.

I started with The Darkest Chocolate Ice Cream in the World
(I don’t always start off with chocolate, but when I do, it’s darkest chocolate in the world)
because dark chocolate ice cream is my favorite flavor
ever since I first had it at Amy’s Ice Cream in Austin.

Jeni’s, Amy’s…
Can someone open up a place called THOR’S ICE CREAM, please?

There is danger in expecting a recipe from one place
to taste like the product from another place
so I reminded myself about that
and focused my expectations on a good dark chocolate ice cream
not Amy’s dark chocolate ice cream.

Continue reading We Cook: Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams at Home – The Darkest Chocolate Ice Cream in the World

We Cook: Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams at Home

I knew they would come when I wasn’t looking.

My husband and I
with Tiny in tow
went to Canal House’s Smallholding Festival for our anniversary on Saturday
and I knew
that the moment I left the house
the moment I stopped checking the doorstop
the books I had been waiting on for a week would come.

More than one person has asked me why I have so many cookbooks
since I “can’t possibly cook everything from them.”

They’re right
but sitting down with a tower of books to plan seven days worth of meals
is the most relaxing
and exciting
time in my week.

The box that arrived at my house while I wasn’t looking
brought several new books for me
among them,
Jeni Britton Baur’s Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at Home. 1579654363

I had read a few reviews on Amazon about the book
Googled a few press releases
but nothing told me what I wanted to know about it.

How did it feel in my hand?
What did the layout look like?
Did the photos, if any, accurately represent the recipes?

So I caved in
used a few rewards points from my book club
and bought the book to find out for myself.

Continue reading We Cook: Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams at Home