Friday, August 12, 2011

The Best Things In Life...

...Aren't Things, But Food. Right behind my family and friends, of course. But yes, I really do believe in the healing power of chocolate chip cookies and vanilla ice cream. Even more powerful since both are homemade.

I bought a Cuisinart Flavor Duo Frozen Yogurt-Ice Cream & Sorbet Maker for a steal a while ago. Having fond memories as a kid making ice cream with my Grammy, this machine was quite an upgrade for a killer price. Cuisinart has discontinued my duo model, but the singular version can be found here. I would highly recommend it: super easy, quick and nearly no clean up.

Between moving, packing and unpacking, I am just getting around to using it. First, I made super easy and very tasty, lemon sorbet. Tonight, I am enjoying these New York Times Favorite Chocolate Chip Cookies with my homemade vanilla ice cream. If you've got a ice cream maker you haven't used in a while, get it out and try this simple recipe for vanilla ice cream:

3/4 cup 2% or whole milk, well chilled
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups heavy cream, well chilled
1+ teaspoon pure vanilla extract, to taste

Whisk milk and sugar until dissolved (about 1-2 minutes). Stir in heavy cream and vanilla to taste. Put into ice cream maker, as per directions of machine.  Makes about 1 quart.

I can't wait to try simple variations of this recipe, by adding the following during the last 5 minutes of mixing:
  • chocolate chip - 1/4 to 1/3 cup
  • cookies & cream - 1/4 to 1/3 cup crushed cookies
  • any other candy (Snickers, Twix, Reese's) crushed to fill 1/4 to 1/3 cup
  • mint - replace vanilla with peppermint extract + 3 ounces chocolate chunks

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