Showing posts with label ice cream. Show all posts
Showing posts with label ice cream. Show all posts

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Vanilla Ice Cream with Roasted Cherry Swirl

Happy Fourth of July Internet friends! 

For my international friends out there, I hope you have an enjoyable Thursday.  For my American friends in the Internet ether, Happy Independence day! 

I hope that your day is filled with sunshine, cookouts, ice cream and warm weather.  I love living in the tri-state area this time of year because we can celebrate the holiday all week long!  There have been fireworks dotting the skyline since Saturday as the hundreds of townships in the area celebrate with local events.  Boyfriend and I headed to the Montclair fireworks last night and have big plans to view the fireworks of New York City, western Long Island and eastern New Jersey from high up in the hills of Upper Montclair tonight.

To celebrate Independence day this year, I decided to put my OXO fruit tools to use and make some cherry swirled vanilla ice cream.  A few weeks ago I received a package from OXO (via the OXO blogger outreach program) filled with tools to help us enjoy the summer fruit bounty.  The box included a pineapple corer, mango pitter, strawberry huller, fruit scoopers and this cherry pitter! 

Using the cherry pitter cut my prep time down significantly and my cherry sauce was in the oven in no time.  Cherries are delicious all on their own, but roast them in the oven with a little sugar, you've got a winner.  Rather than just topping the ice cream with the roasted cherry sauce, I decided to swirl it right into the just churned ice cream.  Super delicious, perfectly refreshing for the fourth of July!

Disclaimer - I received the OXO fruit tools as a part of the blogger outreach program.  All opinions about the tools are my own and I have not been compensated for this post.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Wilde Taste Tester

What do you do for the man who has everything when his birthday rolls around?  Why, you make him Charlie and bring him to is own Chocolate Factory.  Or as it was in this case - Dad and the Perry's Ice Cream Factory!

That's right, I'm the best daughter in the world and I took my dad to his most favorite place in the world for his birthday - the Perry's Ice Cream Factory in Akron, NY. 

Now I can't take all the credit for thinking up this amazing birthday trip.  In reality, it was kismet, fate, destiny or just plain luck, that Perry's Ice Cream invited me (and a special guest) to come visit the factory for their first ever - Perry's Taste Testing event.  The tour and taste testing happened to land on my dads birthday weekend, so I flew home to celebrate (and eat lots of ice cream) with him at Perry's.

If you're not a local Western New Yorker, you might not be familiar with Perry's Ice Cream.  It's a local brand that fills the freezer cases at TOPS and Wegmans in my hometown.  It's the ice cream that our local schools carried when we were kids (get them hooked young!).  Perry's is what you find at local ice cream stands.  If you happen to live near a Wegmans grocery store (except that new one in Boston), you can buy Perry's Ice Cream.  If you are outside of their distribution region, you can come visit me.  I have lots in my freezer.

Perry's is still run by a Perry actually.  See that guy above?  That's Brian Perry, executive vice president and fourth generation Perry's ice cream worker.  During our trip to the factory, we actually got to look down on the factory floor and watch the ice cream being made (sorry, no pics allowed!).  Cartons of ice cream were zipping around all over the place.  Huge silver drums processed the ingredients and immediately distributed the product into containers and sent them to the freezer.  The front of the room was dominated by a machine dedicated to making ice cream sandwiches.  It was totally fascinating.

My dad and I weren't alone in our visit to Perry's.  A few other bloggers were there (Hello to Ashley and Brette!) as well as some local press and other businesses (Including a girl I totally graduated high school with.  But she either didn't recognize me, or is still too cool for school.).  There's me in my bright green pants, standing next to my dad, who is so excited to be there.

A quick group shot with Brian Perry (jammed in the back behind my bright green legs) and some questions from the press (did you know Perry's recycles/reuses/re-purposes just about everything that comes in their doors?) and we were finally off to the most important part - the taste testing!

Now this was going to be a big job.  We weren't there to just eat the ice cream.  We were there to taste test it and give our opinions.  The great ladies at Perry's gave us a presentation about how to taste test.  We had to think about the following things...

1. Texture
2. Flavor
3. Aroma

Lactose-Free Vanilla
Texture is pretty straightforward - Perry's pasteurizes their ice cream low and slow rather than a hot flash pasteurization.  This leads to a smoother, creamier ice cream.  It's devoid of large ice crystals, unless you leave it in the freezer for months, but who is going to do that!  Texture is also touched upon when the ice cream has inclusions - or little bits of something else.  Inclusions vary from nuts to chocolate to candies. 
Oh My, Cherry Pie!
Flavor is where it gets tricky.  First - dairy.  Someone from the South might not like Perry's because you can definitely taste the dairy in the ice cream.  Southerners tend to prefer a sweeter ice cream rather than one with a lot of dairy notes.  Us Northern ice cream eaters like to taste the dairy notes, then the flavors and sweetness.
Movie Time

 Flavor gets more complicated as you add extracts, fruits, chocolates and inclusions.  Did you know there are four different types of vanilla?  Or that you can describe the taste of chocolate in over 20 different ways?  From roasted to nutty, burnt to barny, chocolate is very complex. 

Sponge Candy
Finally comes aroma.  When you plan a taste testing event, be sure to avoid wearing perfumes, lighting scented candles or eating/drinking anything else for about 20 minutes.  You want a clean palate.  Drink plenty of water in between flavors and go from lightest to heaviest flavor (we went from vanilla to dark chocolate).  Be sure your ice cream has a few minutes to warm up from the freezer, other wise you'll just taste cold.  
Queen of Hearts
We taste tested seven different flavors.  Let me tell you, it was a hard task.  I know, I know.  "Eating all that ice cream must have been terrible!"  It was not terrible, I was just very full.  I was a little confused by the Movie Time flavor (Popcorn flavored ice cream with swirls of sea salt caramel and caramel truffles).  It smelled like movie theater popcorn, but tasted like caramel.  Yet it had the aftertaste of popcorn.  My dad loved it and finished mine.

All Natural Black Cherry
I fell in love with the Queen of Hearts flavor (Dark chocolate ice cream with a raspberry swirl and fudge filled hearts).  Most of the men in the room didn't like this one, while the ladies were more partial to it.  I think women tend to lean more toward dark chocolate than to men.  There was also a local flavor - Sponge candy!  Something to get the WNYers excited about summer and bring out the local aspect of Perry's. 

Party Sandwich!
We even got to try their newest novelty - the Party Sandwich.  This will be a bit hit with the under 12 crowd.  Cake batter ice cream, filled with rainbow sprinkles, sandwiched between two vanilla cookies.  They were fun, but sadly the last thing we had for the day.  I couldn't come anywhere near finishing it.

We wrote down all our comments, using our new flavor words like cultured, smoky, caramelized and buttery and handed our comment cards to the Perry's Team.  Hopefully our comments will help make more delicious flavors?  I'd totally be willing to come back and try some more flavors!


The only thing I'm bummed about?  We got to take home a few pints of our favorites, but since I flew to Buffalo, my dad took ownership of all my ice cream!  Plus, all the flavors we tried that day are ice cream stand flavors - not available in the stores!  I guess I'll just have to make another trip to WNY this summer and get a scoop or two by the river.

Before we left, the Perry's team offered to take us into their freezer.  This is not your traditional, basement freezer with a few half gallons of ice cream.  The Perry's freezer is a warehouse, kept at 25 degrees below zero, filled from floor to ceiling with pallets and pallets of ice cream.  My dad wanted to back the truck up to the loading dock and load up a few pallets for himself.

I took the picture on the left just after we got into the freezer.  My dad took a picture of me after spending about a minute in the freezer.  His hands were shaking so bad, all three images he took looked like this!  The freezer workers laughed at us when we came out to warm back up.  But at least I look awesome in a hard hat.  It matched my pants.

This summer I'll have to try to a few of these flavors in my little machine.  It will be a little hard in my home kitchen, but I'm up for the challenge!  I think sponge candy would make an amazing ice cream sandwich (hint hint!).

I there a local brand of ice cream in your part of the country?  Do you prefer it over the big guys?

Photo Credits - Photos 3-6, 15 & 16 are credited to Yuka Photo Art (all the rest are from my iPhone)

Note - While Perry's did provide samples for taste testing, there was no financial compensation for the trip or this post.  I like to write about Perry's because they are one of my local hometown businesses. 

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Yogurt Popsicles

The warm temperatures this week have me yearning for springtime.  I can't wait for long flowy dresses and wedge sandals.  I want to head out to the countryside and pick berries.  I'm ready for winter to release its grip from the Northeast so boyfriend and I can spend out weekends on our bikes, enjoying picnics under shady trees.

While giving our kitchen a good, post-new years cleaning, I came across my popsicle molds.  The day was cold and dark and I was sad to realize it would be months before I would be filling the molds with fresh berry purees and citrusy juices.  The molds went back into the cupboard, waiting for their chance to shine again.

It was this warmer week that brought the popsicle molds back to the front of my mind.  That, along with boyfriends Chobani week, gave me the inspiration to bring you these beauties - Chocolate chip cookie dough frozen yogurt pops.  Maybe with the first set of popsicles, spring will follow soon after?  Like the groundhog of the food world.  Let's hope, because I'm ready for floaty chiffon tops and trips to the farmers market.

These yogurt pops bring our Chobani week to an end, because you can't finish your day without a tasty dessert!  Boyfriend has taught us a little something about the grocery business and the secret world that is behind those swinging doors.  And he's learned quite a bit about yogurt and all the great things you can do with it!

Are you ready for spring?  Or maybe you live in one of those temperate regions of the world, where if it drops below fifty degrees people break out the winter coats.  Seems like we will have a few more chilly weeks here in the tri-state region, doesn't mean I won't be eating these popsicles, just means I'll be curled up on the couch under a blanket when I do eat them!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Brownie Cupcake Sundaes

We are only days away from Christmas.  It's been really easy to tell how many days are left before the holiday weekend begins because of the following.  Each day this week...

My morning train has been emptier and emptier.  Friday morning promises to give me a three-seater all to myself!

There have been fewer and fewer people in the halls at work.  My company is closed next week for our winter shutdown and some people choose to extend this vacation by taking a few days this week as well.  I'm pretty sure there will be 10% of the people in the building and maybe 1% of them will be doing actual work.

My evening return to the city each night has become more packed with families.  They are all dressed up in their winter best, heading to the city to see the Rockefeller tree, shop at Macy's and view the holiday windows.  Oh yeah, and be loud and noisy on the train.  Shhhhh...

T minus five days - Boyfriend has fled the cold weather to visit his parents in Florida.  This is a good thing.  While we will be spending Christmas apart (I'll be heading to Buffalo this to visit my own parents), I get to use this time to shop and wrap for the guy. 

I finished my holiday shopping last night after work.  My antibiotics have helped me kick the bronchitis that took up residence in my chest.  And Perry's Ice Cream sent me two containers of holiday flavors.  It's time to celebrate!

Actually, the container of ice cream pictured is not the original one that they sent me.  I accidentally ate all of that one.  All by myself.  Don't worry, it took me almost two weeks to eat the whole container.  BF and I had to make our way to the New Jersey Wegmans and buy the last container of peppermint ice cream.

Before I ate all of the ice cream, I had plans to make these little brownie cupcakes.  These dessert treats are really simple and perfect for a complicated holiday dinner.  Make some brownie cupcakes, top them with your favorite mint/peppermint ice cream and add a dallop of whipped topping.  Hello delicious.

Happy Holidays everyone!  I hope that you get to spend some time with the ones you love.

Many thanks to Perry's Ice cream for helping it feel like home, all these miles away from Buffalo.  I've also found that if people know about Perry's Ice cream, they love it.  If you can find it, give it a try!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Apple Pie Ice Cream Topping

Is there anything that reminds us of home more than food?  Whether it be your moms special dinner, your dads secret sauce, the local diners Wednesday night special or the family owned soda shops hand-churned ice cream, there is something about having a meal in your hometown. 

Western New Yorkers have a list of things that are near and dear to their hearts.  We have Teds Hot Dogs (and now the renegade spin-off, Theodores) with their traditional coal-fired grills.  Those in search of a greasy and delicious sub sandwich know to head to Viola's in Niagara Falls.  Looking for good wings?  Head to the Anchor bar when in the city, or Duffs when in the suburbs.  Want amazing chocolate?  I always head to Watsons.

There are also a whole bunch of local goods that ex-pat Buffalonians stock up on when visiting home.  We leave room in our suitcases for Chiavettas bbq sauce, Webers mustard and your favorite wing sauce.  I consider packing fewer clothes than I actually might need so that I can bring home the biggest box of sponge candy that I can find.

There has been one thing that I haven't been able to take home.  Something that I grew up with and spent many an evening enjoying with my dad.  Perry's ice cream.  If you are a Western New Yorker or currently live near a Wegmans grocery store, you know about Perry's.  It's the ice cream of choice for all local ice cream places.  There is a huge ice cream cone right new Niagara Falls that will gladly serve you your favorite flavor of Perry's.  It's called - The Twist of the Mist!

In the first twenty-one years of my life, I must have eaten gallons of Perrys.  I was so confused when I went grocery shopping for the first time in Wisconsin to find no Perrys.  And sadly, ice cream doesn't travel well.

I spent the next eight years enjoying my favorite ice cream only at home.  My dad is a bigger fan of the brand than I am.  I know there will always be at least four or five containers of ice cream in the freezer.  This all changed a few months ago.

I was feeling nostalgic for home during the hot summer months and tweeted Perrys.  It was something along the line of  "I miss you Perrys, come to New Jersey!"  The response I got?  "We are in New Jersey!  Head to the Woodbridge Wegmans!"  I nearly fell off my chair.  Boyfriend picked me up a container of black raspberry next time work took him to central New Jersey.

Life got even better this summer when I was contacted by Perrys and asked to join their "Inside Scoopers" team.  As an Inside Scooper, I get early access to new flavors and most exciting, a trip to the Perrys factory!  My dad is super jealous.

Why yes mom, my fingernails are green.
For my first task as an Inside Scooper, I had to test out the new All Natural flavors.  I know, tough job.  These flavors are made the old fashioned way, the way ice cream was made before science got involved.  No artifical flavors or colors.  The way you probably make ice cream at home!  Four simple flavors - chocolate, chocolate chip, maple walnut and vanilla bean - that just beg to be eaten.
Hello, my name is delicious.
Now I know most of you don't have access to Perry's, but if you're in the WNY area, be sure to stop and get yourself a scoop.  Until then, you can make (or buy!) your favorite vanilla ice cream and top it with heaps of this...  Apple pie topping.  Chunks of sweet apples in a caramely sauce, spiced with cinnamon, nutmeg and clove.  It's like an apple pie, without the crust.  It tastes like fall and is just the thing to use up some of those freshly picked apples.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Pomegranate Ice Cream

It happened.  Yesterday morning it finally happened.  You don't know what?  It's absolutely terrible!  I walked outside yesterday morning, and it was dark.  DARK!  The sun was not awake yet, and I was going to work!  Arrrgghhhh!  DARK!

I was okay with waking up at 5:30 in the morning and heading out on the 6:00 train when it was sunny and warm.  I knew that this day was coming though, with the sun rising slower and slower in the morning.  The mornings have been getting cooler and that's okay.  I bought a really cute, asymmetric zippered, sweater.  The fall rains have been coming and I'm cool with that too.  I got my hair cut and it curls really nicely in the humid air.

But the sun coming up after I leave the house?  That is where I draw the line!  Come back sun!  I miss your bright shiny face in the morning, it keeps me from falling asleep on the train...  It's going to be a loooooong winter.  Can't wait until I leave work at night and it's dark out, that will be fun too.  Maybe I should move to Florida?

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Peaches and Cream Popsicles

I had major plans this weekend to make you lots of candy.  Then what happened?  It poured down rain all day Sunday.  And I'm not just talking a little rain, or a light drizzle all day.  I'm talking torrential downpours broken up by constant, driving rain.  High humidity is no time to be tempering chocolate and trying to pull taffy, so it will have to wait until next weekend.

What I did, instead of making candy, is make popsicles!  If you hadn't noticed, popsicles are the new cupcake, at least for summer.  I can't imagine this popsicle trend lasting through winter, maybe in the Souther hemisphere?  Why not join the trend, and cool off a little, in the hot, last weeks of summer.

Please excuse the photograph, I had to run this morning!  I'll fix it later!

Update: my train is ten minutes late, I totally had time to give you a better picture! Nuts... Oh well, have a great Wednesday everyone!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Peanut butter and Chocolate Chip Ice cream

The summer of 2008 is fondly remembered as the lost summer, at least in my mind. 2008 was my last year of grad school and the summer of 2008 was the summer of my thesis. I defended my thesis in late august which meant that I spent the many weeks and months before writing.

My thesis is a collection of over 500 pages worth of text, images and data. Lots and lots of data. I'd say it's over half full of NMR spectra, experimental protocols and mass spec readouts. This massive collection of my brilliance was no easy feat to pull together. I would spend all day working tirelessly in the lab, trying to finish my project before my D-day. I would then head home and take up residence at the kitchen table. I would write introduction chapters, edit Chemdraw slides and resize NMR files. Images would suddenly jump to the next page and I would try to keep data next to the relevant text. The sun would rise and set and I would be there at my computer.

The summer of 2008 was lost in a blur of thesis writing and chemistry doing.  Of course it was all worth it, in the end.  I'm now Dr. Wilde in the Kitchen and my PhD has allowed me to become gainfully employed.  So, while the summer of 2008 may have passed me by, the summer of 2011 is going to be mine.  Here I come weekends, get the beaches ready, release the summer blockbusters, fill my calendar with festivals.  I'm so ready!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Strawberry Gelato

I’m not a terribly lucky person. I’ve never won the Mega Millions (you might have already figured that out, knowing that I live in a 300 square foot apartment). No one has ever showed up at my door with a big check and a bunch of balloons (though, boyfriend did send me a GIANT birthday card one year). I’ve never won a March Madness pool (yes, this is a game of luck, not skill).

However, recently the tides have been turning on my luck. I might just be a lotto ticket away from moving into a larger apartment! I’ll have to buy some more furniture. Let me give you a few examples of my changing fortune…

What's in there???
While getting milkshakes at Brgr last weekend, I got the bigger milkshake. Boyfriends was ever so much smaller. Who’s the winner? Me! (Brgr makes delicious milkshakes. Delicious, expensive milkshakes!)

On a recent walk to dinner with boyfriend, we passed by a series of discarded scratch-off lottery tickets. Most of them we left on the ground, until we came to the crossword scratch-off. (I love the crossword scratch-off!) Boyfriend picked it up and we stopped, was this a winner? Whoever threw the ticket on the ground failed to realize that they had won! We took it to the gas station on the corner and cashed it in for ten dollars! Winner? The piggy bank!

Pink?  I like pink things!
A few weeks ago I commented on Mardi’s blog, because I love her blog, and was entered to win a giveaway. Low and behold, a few days later I was informed that I was the winner of a whole bunch of strawberries! Mmmm, spring fruit. I never win giveaways! A week or so later I got an e-mail from my apartment telling me that I received a package and that I should come get it before they eat it. I was so confused, eat it?

When I got home I was given an enormous box of California Giant strawberries, the whole box smelling like springtime. Eight containers of strawberries were hulled and frozen, just waiting to be turned into something delicious. Here is the first of many upcoming strawberry recipes. And it is so good…

Oooooo, dinner...

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Thin Mint Ice Cream

I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait for one very special time of year. And depending on where you live will determine when you get to revel in this delicious recipe. Now I’m not talking about the first local apples, picked ripe off the tree. I’m not talking about thanksgiving, with all of the tasty foods and family moments. I’m not even talking about when the first bulbs begin to pop up from under the snow covered ground, signifying the beginning of spring. I am talking about Girl Scout Cookie time.

When I first see those sash-clad girls in the mall, or in front of the grocery store, or haunting the entrance of Wal-mart, I get so excited! Once upon a time, I was a girl scout. I was one of those over-achieving, OCD girl scouts. I had a sash full of badges. At camp I had a hat full of pins. During cookie season, I sold cookies like a Keebler Elf.

These days, I don’t sell Girl Scout cookies. I consider having lots of little girls, just so I can have easy access to cookies. If you live near me, and your little girl sells cookies, give me a call.  I’m a cookie gold mine. Last year I wound up with eleven boxes of cookies. Eleven. And remember this, I lived by myself. I like to stock up, because who knows when this time of year will roll around again! I need my cookies!!!

Now I know that depending on where you live, makes a difference with the names of the cookies. Growing up, I sold Samoas. In Wisconsin, I bought Caramel DeLites. My favorite as a kid? Tagalongs. You might know them as Peanut Butter Patties. Apparently there are two factories that produce Girl Scout cookies, thus the differing names. I believe my childhood factory had way more awesome names for the cookies.

Luckily for us all, a Thin Mint is a Thin Mint, and a Thin Mint is delicious. With the year whittling down, I am down to one last box of Thin Mint cookies. To celebrate this last box of cookies I decided to make some ice cream. Hopefully there will be little girls in sashes popping up soon, because I need me some cookies.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Oreo Cheesecake Ice Cream

It has to be said, I love ice cream. Luckily I have a morsel of self control when it comes to eating my ice cream. I can bring home a pint of Ben & Jerry’s and it will last a number of days in the freezer. Usually day one and two are pretty good. Once you get to that third day, and there is half a container left, that it gets a little tricky. Leaving just a bit in the bottom seems silly, so day three I eat it all.

The same cannot be said about all ice creams. If I buy a pint of Blue Bunny ice cream, it is difficult to only eat a single portion. The reason behind this must be the quality of the ice cream! Ben & Jerry’s is so rich, just a bit will do. Blue Bunny is what, a dollar for a half gallon? Cheap ice cream requires more to satisfy!

Homemade ice cream is the most satisfying of all. Not only do you control the quality of the ingredients, but you get that satisfaction that you made it! You invite people over and serve them some ice cream, proudly saying “I made this!” You tell your coworkers that you made ice cream this weekend. Ooo’s and Ahhh’s follow, pride fills your body.

So dust off your ice cream maker and whip up a batch of rich, delicious Oreo cheesecake ice cream. Enjoy it with some friends and feel all warm and fuzzy when they compliment your churning skills.

Oreo Cheesecake Ice Cream

1 cup sugar
4 ounces cream cheese
1 egg
½ tsp vanilla extract
¾ cup milk
1 ½ cup heavy cream
1 cup crushed Oreos

- Beat sugar, cream cheese and egg together
- Bring the milk to a boil on the stovetop then slowly beat into the cream cheese mixture
- Return to the stovetop and cook on low, stirring constantly, until slightly thickened
- Remove from heat and pour through a mesh sieve into a clean bowl
- Add cream
- Cover and refrigerate for several hours or overnight
- Freeze in your favorite ice cream maker, adding the Oreos when the ice cream is semi-frozen, then transfer to a container and freeze solid

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