Category General

End of Summer Nostalgia: Ice Cream Recipes

The other day, I was reminiscing about my childhood experiences at sleep-away camp. I was never the superstar athlete so I always opted for crafts, archery (I got to stand still, no running involved, score!), and of course, cooking. Typical of a children’s summer camp, we made ice cream a lot – the old-fashioned way. It may have been the recipe or just my lack of arm strength, but I never really made it all the way to the ice cream stage in these activities. My arms would get tired from churning or my lanyard would start calling my name and I would abandon my ice cream as the ice melted into the rock salt.

Now that state of the art ice cream makers have hit the market with a bang, I figure it is worth another try. I even saw an ice cream maker at Sur La Table that dispenses your toppings (sprinkles, chocolate chips, etc) right on top of your freshly made ice cream! Now talk about a little kid’s dream. And speaking of innovations, I might even try experimenting with trendy (healthy and organic) flavors a la Bi-Rite Creamery or Humphry Slocombe. Pink Grapefruit-Tarragon? Kumquat-Poppy Seed? These flavors do sound amazing, but here is something truly unique! Parties That Cook founder, Bibby Gignilliat, developed an ice cream recipe for our friends at NUMI Organic Tea who infuse delicious, organic teas with fresh and unusual flavors. This ice cream recipe features NUMI’s Chocolate Puerh tea and it is beyond delicious! Move over Humphry.


1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise, seeds scraped out into the milk
2 bags Numi Chocolate Puerh Tea
8 egg yolks
1 cup sugar
¼ teaspoon kosher salt

Infuse Milk: In a heavy saucepan, heat the cream, milk and the split and scraped vanilla bean until the milk begins to boil slightly around the edges. Turn off the heat. Remove the Numi tea from the tea bag and add it to the milk/cream mixture. Let it steep for 10 minutes.

Make Ice Cream Custard: In a large bowl, whisk yolks, sugar and salt until pale. Gradually whisk hot cream/milk mixture into yolk/sugar mixture. Return to saucepan. Stir with a wooden spoon over medium heat until the custard thickens and leaves a path on the back of a spoon when a finger is drawn across it (about 2-3 minutes) or when the temperature reaches 160ºF (do not boil!). Pour through a strainer into a bowl over an ice bath. Whisk to cool quickly.

Churn Ice Cream: Process custard in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions. Place in the freezer in an air-tight container. Allow the ice cream to set completely before serving (1 –2 hours).

For an ice cream maker, Bibby is partial to Simac’s ice cream machine but suggests Cuisinart’s Frozen Yogurt and Ice Cream Maker for something a little more cost effective.

We have also just updated our dessert recipes section with 5 new delicious ice cream recipes!:
Mint Ice Cream with Scharffen Berger Cocoa Nibs
Ginger Ice Milk
Homemade Spice Ice Cream
Vanilla Ice Cream
White Chocolate and Amaretti Ice Cream

Never rule out smoothie recipes as well! Regardless of season, a smoothie is always a refreshing treat after a long day or a healthy dessert treat.

Coupled with a shiny new machine, I think  this recipe will go over much better than my vanilla soup attempts of yesteryear.

Contributed by Leigh Hermansen

Tartine Cookbook Club

When it became my turn to choose the cookbook for our monthly cookbook club, I decided to take full advantage of having professional chefs on hand to make my meal. San Francisco has many wonderful bakeries and cafes and Tartine Bakery is one of the most well known. The owners have published a cookbook with recipes for all of the treats at the bakery (what a shame). They boast delicious, freshly made baked goods that we soon found out either took all day to make, all of the eggs and sugar at the grocery store or all week to digest. I wish I could apologize to my coworkers for this predicament, but the leftovers stocked in my fridge are akin to edible gold.

Some of my coworkers must have caught on to my game plan and chose to cook up savory treats. These ended up creating the perfect bolsters to the sugary temptations that filled our table.

The Wild Mushroom Tart combined 5 different kinds of mushrooms (button, oyster, shiitake, and crimini and portabello) with shallots, thyme, crème fraiche, and egg yolks. It married perfectly with a flaky tart that was used for all of the tarts at breakfast! The buttery tart crust and array of mushroom flavors was perfect for any meal and would be great for a holiday first course.

The Savory Bread Pudding was a versatile dish that had basic ingredients and allowed for a lot of flexibility with what you could add to the mix. I held off telling the breakfast bunch that the custard contained 10 eggs, 2 cups of heavy cream, and 2 cups of whole milk, plus cheese. Regardless of the heart-attack-inducing amount of dairy, the bread pudding ended up being light and fluffy. It is a great way to use crusty bread ends or day old bread.  The recipe calls for smoked ham, thyme, cheddar or gruyere cheese, and onion. It was great with sweet onion and aged cheddar cheese and could be altered to make a perfect and easy Christmas morning treat.

The Quiche was also a very simple recipe that the owners picked up from a region in the south of France. The basic ingredients are eggs, flour, crème fraîche, milk, salt and pepper, and thyme. They suggest adding any kind of leafy green like chard or spinach. This quiche definitely indicated its French roots because the custard was a little more jiggly than quiches made locally. We took a liking to the looser yet fluffy texture and simple, delicious taste that left us wanting more. There was a lot of crust because the recipe called for a deep pie dish and didn’t yield much filling, but we actually liked it that way.

The sweets included in this cookbook club were worthy of a round of applause just because they put everyone into a sugar-high-then-food-coma pattern for the rest of the day. This course of delicacies made me decide that if I pursue a career in food, it will be with sweets and I will rot my teeth and cholesterol away quite happily.

The Chocolate-Oatmeal-Walnut cookies (which I am hoarding right this second) were the perfect twist on a traditional chocolate chip cookie. Instead of chocolate chips, the recipe calls for coarsely chopped bittersweet chocolate that resulted in a richly addicting flavor. They also included oats, molasses, and walnuts, which gave them a unique texture. The owner of Tartine likes making these cookies thin and in 4 or 5 inch rounds, tricking you into thinking you’re eating less when you end up eating the entire batch.

The Banana Cream Pie was literally the death of all of us. It challenged the chef because it included 4 recipes (flaky tart dough, caramel, banana pastry cream, and homemade whipped cream). Instead of a stiff pie with too much cornstarch, it oozes but makes it a lot lighter and easier to eat. It is lined with chocolate and caramel, layered with pastry cream, freshly sliced banana, homemade whipped cream and chocolate curls. And if you’re wondering, yes, I took half of the pie home for myself.

The Apple Nougatine Tart was also a great twist on a traditional apple dessert that could be great for any holiday. The recipe suggested using different types of apples which gave it a unique apple flavor. For this tart, Granny Smith, Fuji, and Gala lent the pie a wide array of tastes and textures along with the flaky tart crust, caramelized sugar, and sliced almonds. It is perfect for breakfast, lunch, and dinner (I would know), especially with the caramelized bits left over at the bottom of the skillet.

The Almond Breakfast Cake is the perfect solution for anyone who is a big fan of almonds. It is thick and rich, actually the closest thing to perfection when a summer fruit is added into the mix (we used white peaches but it is equally delicious when using raspberries). Even though it takes about twice as long to bake as the recipe calls for, it is worth the time. I’m not sure if it was the touch of our favorite chef or the cake, but it was a perfect crisp white and had a moist consistency. It could be a great breakfast cake or as a dessert served warm with caramel.

To top off all of these temptations, we had a White Chocolate and Lime Parfait with Lime Granita. This parfait defined summer. With the thick, ice cream-like texture of the parfait that featured white chocolate chunks, it was such a unique take on a parfait. The lime granita consisted of steeped kaffir lime leaves, lime juice, and zest with sugar and water. It could have been perfect on it’s own but highlighted the parfait perfectly.

Needless to say, none of us was hungry for about 7 hours. Some people are ready to take a long break from sweets, but I think we all came to the consensus that this cookbook club, despite a few recipe snags, deserves about 5 bazillion stars. As for me, I will require this cookbook as a house warming gift or steal the office copy and pass it off as a parting gift.

Contributed by Leigh Hermansen