September 2nd, 2009 - Gerald "Gerry" Pugliese
People love ice cream. It’s at ballparks, barbecues, street fairs, carnivals and every other slice of Americana.
But ice cream isn’t exactly easy on the environment, even if you only eat soy ice cream, like me.
It takes a lot of electricity to power the huge web of refrigeration required to produce and transport the frozen treat.
That’s why Unilever, maker of Ben & Jerry’s, hopes to invent ice cream that doesn’t require refrigeration.
So, just how much nuclear fissile will it take? It sounds very science-fiction! But it might not be. Unilever is rumored to be developing “ambient” ice cream, which can be shipped and sold at room temperature.
Customers freeze it at home. Obviously, slashing all this refrigeration will reduce energy costs and lower carbon footprints, but will it taste good?
Plus, how the heck do you market warm ice cream! Okay then, time for a little experiment. Would you buy so-called “ambient” ice cream?
Via Environmental Capital.
Read More:It’s Low-Carbon “Cherry Garcia” Ice Cream, Man
July 25th, 2009 - Barbara Feiner
Drop a scoop of ice cream into a cup of freshly brewed espresso, and you have what baristas call affogato (Italian for “drowned”).
We conclude our celebration of National Ice Cream Month with a mochaholic’s fantasy dessert: a rich, homemade hot chocolate with a shock of cold coffee ice cream.
You can use half and half, heavy cream or milk in our weekend recipe, which allows you to control your fat intake.
Prep time is 10 minutes, cook time is 5 minutes, and all of the ingredients should be available at your local natural and organic food store.
For additional summertime ice cream recipes, check out Coffee Bananas Foster and Tart Lime Breeze.
Hot Chocolate Affogato
Makes 2 servings
3/4 cup low-fat (2%) milk
1/2 cup half and half, heavy cream or milk
1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips or 2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 tablespoon sugar
Pinch of salt
1 cup coffee ice cream
Whipped cream (optional)
- Bring milk, half and half, chocolate, sugar and salt just to a boil in 2-quart saucepan over medium-high heat.
- Reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring frequently, 5 minutes or until chocolate is melted.
- Scoop ice cream into two large ice cream bowls. Pour hot chocolate around ice cream and garnish, if desired, with whipped cream.
Recipe and photo courtesy of Starbucks Ice Cream
Read More:Hot Chocolate Affogato
July 17th, 2009 - Barbara Feiner
I fell in love with Bananas Foster during a business trip to New Orleans, where the dish originated.
Chef Paul Blangé of Brennan’s, one of the city’s top restaurants, invented the dessert—a tantalizing combo of bananas steeped in butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, rum and banana liqueur, served over vanilla ice cream. It’s one of those to-die-for, I’ll-watch-my-waistline tomorrow dishes, and Brennan’s goes through 35,000 pounds of bananas each year to meet customer demand.
In celebration of National Ice Cream Month, we’re featuring a special adaptation of the dessert, to be served over slices of pound cake. The recipe can join your collection of “company’s coming” dishes—and I guarantee your guests will leave with smiles and full bellies.
Prep time is 15 minutes, cook time is 5 minutes, and all of the ingredients should be available at your local natural and organic food store. Double, triple or quadruple the recipe based on the number of guests you’re serving.
Coffee Bananas Foster
Makes 2 servings
2 medium bananas, sliced
1/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup heavy or whipping cream
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons dark or light rum
2 slices prepared pound cake (about 1/2-inch thick), toasted
1 cup coffee ice cream
Bring bananas, sugar, cream, butter and rum to a boil over medium heat in 10-inch nonstick skillet. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 minutes or until sauce is slightly thickened. Remove from heat.
Arrange cake on 2 dessert dishes. Top with ice cream, then banana mixture.
Recipe and photo courtesy of Starbucks Ice Cream
Read More:Coffee Bananas Foster
July 16th, 2009 - Barbara Feiner
July is National Ice Cream Month, a culinary celebration designated by President Ronald Reagan in 1984.
About 9% of all milk produced by U.S. dairy farmers is used to make ice cream. According to the NPD Group, a global market research firm, America’s top five flavors are: vanilla (30%), chocolate (10%), butter pecan (4%), strawberry (3.7%) and chocolate chip mint (3.2%).
The U.S. Department of Agriculture notes that whole-milk ice cream accounts for most frozen dessert purchases, (62.4%), followed by low-fat/nonfat ice cream (25%), frozen yogurt (4.4%), water ice (4.1%), sherbet (3.4%) and other (0.8%).
Most of us purchase ice cream in supermarkets (as opposed to scoop shops), so be sure to buy organic brands. My favorite flavors include:
Pair any of these flavors with a Let’s Do Organic Ice Cream Cone, and you have a no-fuss summertime dessert.
Read More:Celebrate National Ice Cream Month!
July 7th, 2006 - Barbara Feiner
Marjoram-Scented Pears with Gorgonzola is a uniquely delicious dessert accented with a lightly caramelized honey syrup. All of the ingredients should be readily available at your local natural and organic food store.
Closely related to oregano, marjoram is pleasantly aromatic, with a sweet, mint-like taste. It’s an ideal complement to other herbs, including rosemary, sage and thyme.
A staple in Mediterranean cooking, marjoram pairs well with beef, chicken, garlic, onion, pasta, pork, seafood and vegetables. Many chefs, however, like to combine savory and sweet flavors, as this recipe demonstrates.
Marjoram-Scented Pears with Gorgonzola
Makes 8 servings
- 4 firm ripe pears
- 1/4 cup honey
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1/2 teaspoon dried marjoram leaves
- Gorgonzola cheese (or other desired cheese) at room temperature
- Preheat oven to 400°. Peel and halve pears. With paring knife, remove cores and hollow out centers with small spoon. Arrange pear halves in 11” x 7” x 2” baking dish.
- Heat honey, butter, water and marjoram in small saucepan on medium heat until honey boils and butter has melted, stirring occasionally. Pour over pears, turning pears to coat.
- Bake 25 minutes or until pears are tender when pierced with knife and honey begins to caramelize, turning pears and basting every 10 minutes.
- Transfer pears, cut-side up, to serving platter or 8 dessert plates. Spoon remaining honey mixture over pears. Serve warm or at room temperature. Spoon cheese into center of each pear just before serving.
Recipe courtesy of McCormick
Read More:Marjoram-Scented Pears with Gorgonzola
June 30th, 2006 - Barbara Feiner
What’s a holiday like the Fourth of July without something just a little bit decadent?
For your commitment to eating healthful organic food and living an organic lifestyle, we offer an enthusiastic “high five.” But every once in a while (emphasis on “a while”), it’s OK to splurge on a treat that makes your eyes roll back into your head. The good news? You can prepare such epicurean luxuries with organic ingredients.
The key, of course, is moderation. Enjoy this recipe for Frozen Hot Chocolate every day, and your pants will start to squeeze you like a python. Sip a single serving during a special holiday barbecue, and you won’t pay a heavy (pun intended) price.
This recipe creates a dessert beverage that’s rich, frothy and thick enough to eat with a spoon or enjoy through a straw.
Frozen Hot Chocolate
Makes 4 servings
- 3 tablespoons superfine granulated sugar (or baking sugar)
- 2 to 3 tablespoons double-chocolate, rich-chocolate or milk-chocolate flavored hot cocoa mix
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/3 cup semisweet chocolate morsels
- 1/3 cup milk chocolate morsels
- 12 fluid ounces milk, divided
- 4 cups ice cubes
- Whipped cream
- Place sugar, cocoa mix and butter in top of a double boiler set over gently boiling water. Stir frequently until melted and a smooth paste forms. Add morsels; stir. When morsels begin to melt, slowly stir in 1/2 cup milk. Stir until smooth and velvety. Cool to room temperature.
- Place chocolate mixture, remaining milk and ice in a blender (in batches, if necessary); cover. Blend until smooth. Pour into individual glasses or bowls. Top each serving with a dollop of whipped cream. Sprinkle with additional chopped morsels, if desired. Serve with straw and/or spoon.
Recipe and photo courtesy of Jenny Harper, senior culinary specialist for the Nestlé Test Kitchens and VeryBestBaking.com
Read More:Decadence Alert!
January 13th, 2006 - Barbara Feiner
Pods or ground? That’s the decision you need to make when you cook with cardamom.
“Whether you choose the ground spice vs. pods depends on how you plan to use the ingredient,” says Chef Anis Toumi, a chef instructor at the California School of Culinary Arts in Pasadena.
“Roasting and grinding a fresh pod leads to a stronger flavor vs. using the spice pre-ground,” he tells Organic Authority. “You can use the full pods to infuse flavors and then discard them, whereas if you use ground cardamom, it cannot be removed.”
Here’s Chef Toumi’s recipe for a cardamom-flavored flan. Note: Because you follow an organic lifestyle, Organic Authority recommends using certified organic ingredients, when available, in all recipes to minimize your risk of exposure to pesticides, chemicals and preservatives.
8 ounces sugar (for caramelizing)
2 ounces water
12 fluid ounces milk
3 pods or a pinch of ground cardamom
2¾ ounces sugar
- Combine 8 ounces of sugar and the water in a saucepan to make a caramel. Bring to a boil and cook until mixture becomes golden and caramelized (not too dark, not too light).
- Let caramel cool; coat the bottoms of several ramekins with it.
- Pour the milk and cardamom into a saucepan. Bring to a simmer.
- Whisk the eggs and 2 ¾ ounces of sugar in a separate bowl. Add the milk to the mixture.
- Strain the custard and pour it into the ramekins.
- Place the ramekins in a shallow baking dish. Add enough hot water to reach halfway up the sides of the ramekins (a “water bath”). Bake at 300°F to 325°F until set.
- Chill for 24 hours. Unmold upside down onto a plate.
Read More About Cardamom
A Passage to India
White Hot Chocolate
Mashed Sweet Potatoes and Apples with Pecan Streusel Topping
Read More:Cardamom Flan