I Scream...you Scream

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I Scream...you Scream
Yep you guessed it, we're talking about ice cream.  Superman has Kryptonite, the Wicked Witch of the West has water, and I have my ice cream.  I've been wanting to get an ice cream maker for quite some time now and the Cuisinart and DeLonghi were the two I was trying to decide between.  Both of them had about a 4 star review and I figured I'd wait until I found something better and save myself about $300 in the process.  Over the weekend I was at William Sonoma and found the Cuisinart on clearance for $160.  They said they aren't going to carry that line anymore but wasn't sure what it was going to be replaced with.  I figured for almost 50% off it was time to make my move.  

I'm not sure how many have ice cream makers or have made ice cream before but I wanted to start a conversation on it.  You know what they say about cooking, the fewer the ingredients the better you have to be.  What ingredients do you like to use?  Do you have any favorite recipes?  In Jacob's flourless cake he used guittard chocolate instead of regular chocolate because of it's quality.  Have you tried using a sweetener instead of sugar because of the quality or how it interacts with other ingredients?  Let's dish about the perfect scoop.
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Somehow my reply got lost while posting.  Here is the abbreviated recap of what I so eloquently said:

Me too.  Every other week or so.

Donvier -- inexpensive & easy to use.  We keep the canister in freezer at all times so ice cream can be made without too much delay.

Any recipe made with custard base.  Non-egg base are sometimes a bit too grainy for our liking.

Fruit flavors mostly.  Olive oil gelato recently.  Fave recipes are Batali's gelato chapter of his Molto Mario book.  Sometimes reduce egg by up to 1/3.

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  Mine is a Cuisinart and I make ice cream on occasion, what keeps me from doing more is that when making ice cream you actually see how much butterfat goes into it.  That scared me into making more sorbet. 
  My favorite ice cream flavor was one that I made up.  Begin with your favorite vanilla bean recipe ( the one that comes with the ice cream maker is delicious).  While the machine is running, rough chop about 1 cup of macadamia nuts and roast them in a heavy bottomed pan, remove the nuts and in the same pan make a caramel sauce using butter and brown sugar.  When the sauce has cooled and the ice cream  has thickened, add the caramel and nuts to create a swirl,OMG!!
  @ Brian, how was the olive oil gelato?    
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Don't have a machine, here, but make ice cream, once in a while, by just placing it into the big freezer.

Here is an experiment I tried a while back that was VERY successful (and VERY delicious):

Vanilla Chai Ice Cream

Ingredients:
  • 1 Cup Heavy cream
  • 1/4 Cup Sugar
  • 2 Bags Vanilla chai (I used Bigelow)
Instructions:
  1. Place cream and sugar into a small saucepan.
  2. Heat on medium-low heat until sugar is dissolved.
  3. Add the tea bags.
  4. Continue heating until cream is scalded.
  5. Remove from the heat.
  6. Allow the tea to steep in the cream, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes.
  7. Remove the tea bags, pressing them well to release as much liquid from them as possible before discarding them.
  8. Stir the mixture well to distribute the tea evenly.
  9. Freeze with an ice-cream maker or just in a container in the freezer (stirring occasionally - about every 30-45 minutes - for the latter).
WOW, this stuff is good!  Of course, you may adjust quantities as you like.  I'm single and it's nice to use just one box (the heavy cream, here is ultra-pasteurised and in 250-ml boxes).

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I've had my Donvier for more than 25 years, and still love it.

Most of my recipes are packed away for the next two weeks, but I go one of two ways. I start with basic custard-based recipes and tweak the flavors - pump up the coffee with extra espresso powder and a touch of cardamom, for example - or I play with fruit sorbets like wild Maine blueberry with cinnamon or pear/champagne/ginger. For the fruit sorbets I've gotten good textures by starting in the Vitamix, then cooling the mixture and finally freezing in the Donvier. In the height of summer, lemon-mint sorbet is the very best (but lemon-basil is also yummy!).
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@ Labs & Enilorac,  the flavors that you have come up with are really great.  I just love this website!  We had a pink grapefruit tree for years and enjoyed sorbet made from that.  If you get the chance, try making that.  It's rather exotic tasting.

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Nina, the Olive Oil gelato is OK but not really my favorite for a dessert.  I originally experienced that flavor at one of Batali's restaurants (Otto in Las Vegas) and it was good.  Mine tasted just like his but 

I keep thinking that it might be better suited to a savory presentation.  Maybe I should try making a sun-dried tomato gelato and a fresh mozzarella gelato, then serve the trio of gelati with a chiffonade of basil for a salad.
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Oooo - I forgot about savory uses for ices! At a Cape Cod restaurant last year we had a perfect horseradish ice served with local fresh oysters. Yummmm!
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Savory ices can really stretch your imagination.  We also had some raw seafood with different granita.  Horseradish, tabasco, and I believe that one was a champagne granita.  The sun dried tomato sounds interesting, or maybe a basil gelato as part of the gelati trio.  In my book that's a course!

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BrianShaw said...

"I keep thinking that it might be better suited to a savory presentation.  Maybe I should try making a sun-dried tomato gelato and a fresh mozzarella gelato, then serve the trio of gelati with a chiffonade of basil for a salad."

I LOVE savory ice creams and sorbets. I did a dish last summer that was a take on a BLT with sous vide pork belly, early girl tomato sorbet with a butter lettuce puree and brioche toast. It was a big hit and a fun take on a classic flavor profile.

Great thread.

Oh, by the way, I didn't have the budget to buy a professional sorbet/ice cream machine, so we've been using this Cuisnart Ice Cream Maker. Since we're a small restaurant and I prefer to spin my ice creams and sorbets every day, all we really need is one quart a night. Since I have quite a few sorbets and ice creams on the menu, I bought two and have had great results. I figure at this rate I could burn out ten Cuisnarts and still save money on the big, commercial machine.

Also, sorbet and ice cream stabilizers are always a nice addition to your recipe because they inhibit large ice crystal formations, resulting in a smoother texture/consistency.
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Jacob what would be an ice cream stabilizers?  Would that be the same glucose powder you used in the peanut butter truffle recipe?  
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Ice cream and sorbet stabilizers are a mixture of food grade gums that promote small crystal formation and will allow even and slower melting. Mainly though, they're there to improve mouthfeel. Here are some examples on Chef Rubber:

Ice Cream Stabilizer: http://www.shopchefrubber.com/product.php?productid=12507&cat=1585&page=2

Sorbet Stabilizer: http://www.shopchefrubber.com/product.php?productid=12122&cat=0&page=1
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