Nov 22, 2013

Vendee Globe And A Sundae On The High Seas

Eating an ice cream sundae is always a treat but when it's presented in a colorful and novel way it's even more appealing. Some of the best creators of unusual sundaes I've found are in France - a place where they place great importance on outdoor life and culture.

You might think that the month of November would inspire an ice cream maker but you'd be wrong! Once every four years in mid November, the SW coast of France plays host to one of the world's greatest sporting events - the start of the single-handed round the world yacht race. Entitled the Vendee Globe, the start of the race attracts sailing enthusiasts from all over the world.

Moreover, if they fancy a dessert they can enjoy a fabulous ice cream sundae like this .....

A veritable mountain of delicious ice cream set alongside sugared, whipped cream, caramel sauce, chopped nuts and topped off with a piece of meringue in the shape of a wave and a great, wooden, miniature sailing boat. 

This particular sundae was made at an ice cream parlor just down the coast from Les Sables d'Olonne in The Vendee where the Vendee Globe race commences.

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Nov 12, 2013

Yuzu & Strasberry, Juicy Fruit For Ice Cream

Most of the people who visit my ice cream recipes website look for recipes to make their own delicious homemade ice cream and generally speaking the most popular searches are for vanilla and chocolate. Fruit ice cream flavors are further down the list with strawberry at the top followed by banana. Other fruits are less popular and that's probably because most of them make better sorbets than traditional creamy ice cream (or gelato).

Juicy fruits are wonderful of course in their own right and my favorite is a classic, simple fresh fruit cocktail with apple, pear, pineapple and nectarine. So when I read a news item announcing a fruit that I've never heard of before, it grabs my immediate attention. This week I came across just such a new fruit - the Yuzu.

Regarded by some (apparently) as the world's sexiest fruit and favored by many top chefs in their cuisine, the yuzu is a citrus fruit that originates from East Asia. It looks like a small grapefruit and tastes a little like one with a hint of mandarin and lemon. The good thing about the yuzu is that one piece of the fruit has 3 times more vitamin C than a standard lemon. Popular in East Asia for a long time, yuzu is set to become much more commonplace on Western restaurant menus and as a flavoring in foods on supermarket shelves. So what about yuzu ice cream?

orange sorbet
Well, I haven't as yet made some but when I do I will probably use my simple orange sorbet recipe as a guideline - ie:

a) make a sugar syrup from water, sugar and zest
b) when thoroughly chilled, add to it the yuzu juice
c) transfer to the ice cream maker for churning/freezing

More details on my sorbet recipes page here.

It's not the first time I've got excited about a new fruit and how to make it into ice cream. Back in 2008, I had great fun with a batch of fresh strasberries (that's no typo, I really mean strasberries!).

Within 48 hours of reading a news article I had got hold of some strasberries and made my own strasberry ice cream. Sweet, chunky and creamy it was one of the best fruit ice creams I've ever had.

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