In my mind there is nothing that screams “summer” more than a big dish of homemade ice cream. One taste of freshly churned ice cream and I feel like I should be sitting outside on a big porch swing enjoying a warm summer day. Even if in reality it is the middle of winter and cold outside.
Homemade ice cream is not difficult to make and fresh ice cream is definitely worth the effort. To get the best ice cream it is necessary to have an ice cream maker, but they are available at a reasonable price and once you have one you will wonder how you lived without it. Especially when it comes to making non-dairy ice creams. Homemade is so much better than the store bought varieties widely available that there is no comparison.
Most of the time I make parve ice cream to serve after a meat meal, but Shavuot is the perfect excuse to serve dairy ice cream so that is what I will be churning up to serve after the blintzes.
While an unadorned scoop of ice cream makes a great dessert for everyday, when serving ice cream as the dessert for a festive meal I like to pair it with complimentary toppings to make it a complete dessert worthy of company. This Amaretto Ice Cream with Raspberry Sauce and Homemade “Magic Shell” is certainly an elegant ending for any meal. Creamy Amaretto ice cream is topped with a fresh raspberry sauce and a chocolate sauce that hardens into a crunchy shell, like “magic”. The chocolate sauce will keep for up to a month at room temperature, so it is a great thing to have on hand to add another layer of texture and flavor to any ice cream.
Another great thing about homemade ice cream is that it provides the opportunity to make flavors of ice cream that are not readily available in the stores. This mint ice cream is one of those flavors. It is nothing like the mint ice cream from the store. The fresh spearmint gives it a light herbal flavor that is reminiscent of mint tea. Its subtle sweetness is the perfect match for lightly sweetened strawberries and whipped cream.
Although Shavuot is a great opportunity to enjoy a dairy dessert, there are plenty of times when a non-dairy dessert is needed and this ice cream is the perfect solution. Creamy and refreshing, with the crunch of chocolate cream cookies, no one would ever suspect that this Mint Cookie Ice Cream is parve. Top it with rich chocolate ganache and it is sure to win over even those who don’t believe a parve ice cream can be worth eating.
With the weather starting to turn warmer and summer just around the corner these flavors are just the beginning of the possibilities for a whole summer of delicious ice cream making. For more ice cream flavors, such as Deconstructed Cheesecake, Coffee Toffee and Chocolate Peanut Butter Overload be sure to check out the current issue of the Joy of Kosher magazine.