Photo by stu_spivak/Flickr CC
What flavor are you?
Enthusiasm for summer in the South starts out on full throttle with a lust for outdoor activities, trips to the lake, the beach, grilling, homemade ice cream and vibrant flowers in all the patio pots.
Unfortunately, like many lustful relationships, three months into it we begin to wilt and fade along with the petunias on the patio. One passion during the summer that does not seem to fade, though, is the passion for ice cream. I have always heard that Alaska is the largest consumer of ice cream per capita, then Portland, Oregon, and Kansas City.
As a chef I have always divided people into three dessert groups: citrus, chocolate or caramel.
I have never put much thought into how they do these surveys or verify them. All I know is for generations, the lines for soft-serve ice cream at the Malt Shop in Natchez are always eternal during the summer months--and even longer at three in the afternoon once school begins.
Whether dining inside or outside, I love making ice cream during the summer. I like it even more after I was given a Cuisinart electric ice cream maker. The ice cream maker has an insert you place in the freezer so you avoid the hassle of ice and salt and it makes ice cream in about 25 minutes. I know there are several on the market that have good ratings.
As a chef I have always divided people into three dessert groups: citrus, chocolate or caramel. I put berries into citrus as they have some of the same qualities that people like in a citrus dessert. I love a good chocolate, but just one perfect piece will satisfy me. I am most definitely a caramel person: once I got a taste of caramelized sugar on my first crème brulee, I was hooked and cannot get enough. What flavor are you?
Here are a few helpful hints about making ice cream:
• I always make it the day before or earlier in the day so it can set up
• Too much water or alcohol makes ice cream granular
• Too little fat and too little sugar makes ice cream granular( This is why you need the butterfat from cream or half and half or--my preference--both)
• Make sure your paddle in your ice cream maker scrapes the sides well
Here is my recipe for Pineapple Short Cake with Crème Brulee Ice Cream--my personal favorite.