240 internautes sur 247 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
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Since buying this book, I've tried four of Jeni's recipes: Goat Cheese and Roasted Cherries, Salty Caramel, Darkest Chocolate Ice Cream in the World, and Buckeye State. Perfect results with all of them! Just follow the recipe, and you really will get Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream at Home.
Before getting started, I'd recommend reading the first chapter of the book with Jeni's notes, tips, and explanation of the science behind making a great ice cream. As far as equipment goes, you'll need an electric ice cream machine (Jeni uses the Cuisinart Ice-20), whisk, 4-quart or larger pot, 2-3 mixing bowls, gallon size ziploc bags, ice cream storage container, parchment paper, and a big bowl for creating an ice bath. Other tools that comes in handy: a knife for chopping up larger ingredients, cherry pitter if you plan on making anything with cherries in it, digital kitchen scale, and double boiler for melting chocolate. You'll want an extra freezing canister if you plan on making more than one batch a day. For cooking the ice cream mixture, Jeni recommends a 4 quart pot, but I've been using a 6-quart stock pot and couldn't imagine anything smaller. When boiling your cream mixture, it could easily boil over, if your pot isn't big enough.
Basic Ice Cream Ingredients: you'll need heavy cream, whole milk, cornstarch or tapioca starch, sugar, salt, cream cheese, and light corn syrup/glucose syrup. Each recipe will also call for different additional ingredients like vanilla extract or beans, chocolate, natural peanut butter, spices, honey, nuts, liquor, etc. As with all cooking, the better the ingredients: the better the product. Buy organic ingredients and non-homogenized dairy products if you can, and splurge on the "good" chocolate...all this effort deserves the good chocolate!
Ice Cream Storage: I have tried three different storage methods. Reusable gladware/tupperware containers are ok, but I had a couple crack and shatter after freezing, leaving all the ice cream exposed to air. Specialty containers like the ones sold at designer kitchen supply stores are good, but I didn't want to spend $35 on a container, especially when I like to keep several flavors on hand. My favorite containers have been the disposable cardboard containers by Sweet Bliss. The Plain White Quart Size Frozen Dessert Containers fit one Jeni's recipe, or you can divide it between 2-3 Pint sized containers. Great for home storage and transporting (in an iced cooler).
It's been a blast to make all these great recipes, and I fully intend on cooking my way through this whole book! The recipes are well written and easy to follow. The photography is beautiful, and you get a good feel of what the finished ice cream is supposed to look like. Jeni lists her preferred suppliers if you want to use the exact same ingredients (I've found similar replacements at Whole Foods or the local farmers market).
One note: the "Salty Caramel" recipe has one small typo. The ingredient list calls for vanilla, but it's not listed in the recipe instructions. I added it at the end before mixing the cream mixture with the cream cheese mixture.
7/9/11 - One more note: there is another typo in The Milkiest Chocolate Ice Cream in the World recipe. It should read 1.25 cups of heavy cream instead of just 0.25 cups of heavy cream. I've heard that these typos will be fixed in the second edition which will be printing soon!
208 internautes sur 220 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
- Publié sur Amazon.com
I don't live anywhere near Jeni's shops, so I've never bought her ice cream and cannot comment on whether these recipes really taste like what she sells at her shop. Other reviewers seem to say it does, so if you already love her ice cream, you might be very pleased with the book. I, on the other hand, found these recipes disappointing.
I got the book about a year ago, and have been experimenting with the recipes ever since. I was excited to learn of a technique for making egg free ice cream with a super smooth texture that will stay smooth even after freezer storage for days. Many ice cream recipes call for eggs, and cooking the egg/cream/milk/sugar mixture it into a custard. These custard based ice creams do stay nice and smooth in the freezer for a long time, but I was interested in learning about Jeni's egg free technique, for when I have no eggs or for when I'll be serving it to someone who cannot eat eggs.
All the recipes use an interesting strategy for binding the water, which helps prevent ice crystals from forming (ice crystals give ice cream a gritty texture). The milk/cream is boiled for 4 minutes to denature the proteins, then a corn starch slurry is added and it's cooked for another minute to thicken it. Some corn syrup is used because it is high in glucose, which binds water better than table sugar. Finally, cream cheese is added (or evaporated milk, in the case of one of the chocolate recipes), for "body".
I've made many batches with this technique, usually experimenting with either vanilla or chocolate, since we eat a lot of that, but I tried about 10 different flavors in all. Flavor and texture are good (I mean how can you go wrong with cream and sugar), but I have to say that there is not a single flavor using Jeni's technique that I prefer over the same flavor made with a custard base, or over uncooked ice cream. Every flavor tastes a little like cheese cake and cooked milk, and it melts into a paste in the warmth of my mouth, leaving a pasty after-feel. Some people I served it to found the thick texture to be sumptuously pleasant, but some of us (myself included) find it pasty and unpleasant. And I do like cheese cake, but do not want all of my ice cream flavors to taste like cheese cake.
I tried many different things to try to improve the flavor and reduce the pastiness, but nothing really resulted in an improved final product. In the end I decided that Jeni had pretty much optimized the technique, which, again, makes some pretty good, but not out of this world ice cream. And if I'm going to spend a lot of time and calories, and dirty so many dishes in the process, I want the result to be outrageously delicious.
Here is a summary of what I tried, FYI:
1. Substituted tapioca starch for corn starch (Jeni says she uses tapioca starch in her shop) - no difference.
2. Substituted tapioca syrup for corn syrup (jeni uses the former in her shop) - no difference.
3. Reduced amount of corn/tapioca starch - pastiness reduced, but texture less smooth.
4. Reduced cream cheese - tasted less like cheese cake, but then the unpleasant cooked flavor of the milk/cream is more prominent. So I came to the conclusion that the most important role of the cream cheese was to mask the cooked flavor, not to give the ice cream "body", and these recipes really do need the cream cheese to make the final product taste good. (Oh, just remembered: Jeni's suggestion of using organic valley cream cheese is right on. I tried Philadelphia, and it doesn't mix in as well into the ice cream base: the final product has annoying little tiny lumps of cream cheese throughout it.) I highly recommend warming the cream cheese before mixing it with the base, but the way, as this helps reduce clumping.
5. Reduced cooking time to 3 minutes: tastes better, but then final product not as smooth. I found it interesting that Jeni says milk proteins bind water better than egg proteins do. That's right, but only if you boil the bejesus out of the milk, making it taste funny. You have to cook it that much to denature the proteins so they will bind the water. Eggs, on the other hand, produce a delicious flavor and velvety texture just by cooking the mixture to 170 degrees to form a custard. That doesn't destroy the fresh flavor of the milk and cream, and the final product stays just as smooth after days of freezer storage.
So that's about it. It does dirty a lot of dishes: the saucepan for the milk/cream, a bowl for the corn starch slurry, and a bowl for the cream cheese. The 3 stars are for the beauty and engaging nature of the book, the novel technique, and the interesting flavor combinations. But the upshot is that I won't use Jeni's recipes very often, as it is a time consuming method that dirties lots of dishes, and the ice cream is just good, not great. Flavor and texture are just not quite right.
I would suggest trying out one of her recipes available online to see if you like this type of ice cream, before buying the book. Really it's a question of taste. Obviously the positive reviews say that a lot of people like this ice cream. Maybe it depends on what you are used to. And maybe Jeni's ice cream, with its corn syrup and pasty cornstarch base, approximates supermarket brands better than other home made ice creams do, which I wouldn't know, since I haven't had supermarket ice cream in many years.
20 internautes sur 20 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
- Publié sur Amazon.com
It's a beautiful book to look at, and Jeni's recipes have really interesting flavor combinations that make you want to make her ice cream every week.
Here are the recipes I've made (will add more over time):
- Salty Caramel, which Jeni's describes as her biggest selling flavor, is extraordinarily thick, creamy and rich. Making the caramel with the dry sugar technique takes some close monitoring but isn't overly technical for cooking at home. The recipe didn't come close to making the quart it was supposed to, but the flavor is so rich the batch will last you awhile all the same. In my batch the sweet overpowered the salty, so if you're looking for the contrast, go a bit heavier on the salt than the recipe calls for.
- Toasted Rice with a Whiff of Coconut and Black Tea, is a really neat flavor. I recommend, when toasting the rice, don't go all the way to "the color of brown sugar" as Jeni instructs. This gave the rice a slight burnt taste in my batch, so go for a lighter brown. Also, make sure to taste the rice pudding as it cooks to get the al dente texture the recipe calls for. I went a bit past al dente to a softer rice texture, still good, but it could have been better. If you don't have a fine sieve to remove the tea from the cream mixture, pour it through cheese cloth, which worked great for me. The final ice cream is a very unique and delicious combination of flavor which is led by the black tea, and texture which is led by the rice. Don't expect a lot of coconut flavor if you go the full 10 minutes steeping the black tea. All-in-all unique and delicious.
- Savannah Buttermint is very rich with a satisfying, substantial mouth-feel. I found it overly sweet fresh out of the ice cream maker, but much more mellow and smooth the next morning after a night in the freezer. The only real trick in the cooking was melting the white chocolate. I used white chocolate chips instead of chopping up baking squares, and the chips were very slow to melt in a double-boiler (really a pot-in-a-pot) so I added heavy cream about a teaspoon at a time until the chocolate finally melted into a thick paste. The flavor profile of this ice cream - with 10 drops butter flavor to 4 drops peppermint oil - is much more buttery than minty. If you like a pronounced mint flavor I'd go 7 drops butter flavor and 5-6 drops peppermint oil. Also I think this flavor would be excellent a bit less sweet - you may want to go with 1/3 cup of sugar instead of 2/3.
- Roasted Strawberry and Buttermilk is extraordinarily thick and creamy. The buttermilk adds a finish of tang that adds a unique freshness and character to the deep strawberry flavor. I expected the strawberries to shrink and dry in "roasting", but there's not enough oven time for that. They stay plump. It's more like you're heating them through to bring out their natural flavor. I almost increased the roasted strawberry puree content from 1/2 cup, but stayed with the directions and was pleased with the final strawberry quality. This was also the recipe where I learned that when Jeni says use a 4 quart pot to boil the cream mixture, that's really important. I used a small saucepan and as soon as the mixture reached boiling it surged out of the pot and all over the stove. Definitely use a big pot to boil the cream mixture!
- Baked Apple Sorbet is very flavorful, like apple cider at the season's peak, or a spiced apple sauce. The recipe is interesting, essentially baked apples, cider, cinnamon and vanilla, pureed in a food processor and then strained for the juice which is spun the ice cream maker until it forms "soft peaks" like whipping cream. The cinnamon and vanilla bring a nice depth to the apples, and I found the overall balance of flavors right on target. I used and high quality vanilla extract syrup instead of a vanilla bean, which worked just fine.
- Bangkok Peanut is rich and delicious. Just a 1/2 cup of peanut butter really goes a long way delivering the peanut flavor, but it's the coconut milk and toasted coconut that really take this flavor to another level. My wife who doesn't like peanut butter ice cream really liked this one, and I think it's the complexity of the coconut that won her over. The only challenge with this ice cream is the toasted coconut clumps around the churner paddle, so isn't evenly dispersed evenly through the ice cream when the churn is done. It must be re-blended in by hand.
- Maple Ice Cream with salty buttered nuts is thick, rich and creamy. I think I've used this description for almost every ice cream I've reviewed here, so please forgive my redundancy, it's the most accurate description. Jeni recommends using Grade B or C maple syrup for this recipe ("they have a stronger maple flavor"). My supermarket only had Grade A so I selected the most premium Grade A on the shelf for this recipe. The result was a very strong, rich maple flavor. It's hard to imagine getting a stronger flavor with a Grade B or C, but it would be interesting to hear other peoples' results. The salty buttered nuts (I used pecans) are absolutely essential to this recipe, because the salt and crunch cuts right through the creamy sweet maple, adding a bright contrast that really wakes up the flavor.
- Sweet Potato with Torched Marshmallow has a good ice cream base, with the molasses adding pleasing maple notes, and the potatoes contributing a more pureed than creamy mouth-feel. The torched homemade marshmallows are the star here though, don't even think of leaving them out. Making them takes some time and care - boiling the sugar to a precise temperature, beating to a consistency like marshmallow fluff, spreading the fluff onto a baking sheet and cutting it into squares. I was lucky I didn't really know what I was getting into, but the final marshmallows were a big hit with my kids, and worth making even without the ice cream. Don't forget to torch the marshmallows with a kitchen torch before adding to the ice cream - it brings out a different and better flavor than the plain marshmallows. The consistency of my marshmallows ended up a bit more like nougat than your conventional soft gooey supermarket marshmallows. I don't know how it happened, but it tasted great all the same.
UPDATE - of all the flavors so far, this took the longest to use up. My wife and kids just weren't crazy about it. The kids were happier eating the extra marshmallows. I you make this one, my suggestion is make it for a big crowd who will eat most of it in one sitting.
- Black Coffee is rich and delicious for any coffee lover. It's very simply to make. You just steep ground coffer in the hot cream mixture for 5 minutes, then strain through a sieve. You need 1/4 cup coffee, which is a little less than 2 single-serve pods. I used Wolfgang Puck "Vienna Coffee House" which imparted a nice dark coffee flavor, but I guess a good thing about this recipe is your ability to use whichever ground coffee you like best.
- Banana Ice Cream with Caramelized White Chocolate Freckles is pleasantly lighter than most of the others so far. If you like banana desserts I think you'll love it. I used a full vanilla bean as the recipe calls for, which contribute great flavor, but I suspect 1/2 bean would be fine if you want to save the rest. Ripe bananas pureed work well to achieve a smooth base for freezing. The caramelized white chocolate freckles add a nice dulce de leche flavor. I used Nestle chips instead of chopped blocks, and grape seed oil because I couldn't find refined coconut oil at my local supermarket. I think any light neutral oil would work fine - you need function here, not flavor. Lastly I layered the caramelized chocolate into the container, which resulted in nice big chunks, instead of drizzling it into the mixer.
- Coriander Ice Cream with Raspberry Sauce - I ordered Jeni's complete essential oil kit from aftelier.com, so am set to make any of the recipes with essential oils. I like this flavor a lot. Coriander is smooth and with hints of vanilla as Jeni says, but quite different and hard to describe. I made both raspberry and blackberry sauce for this recipe. I ended up only needing one, so went with the blackberry, which was delicious and very necessary to complement the coriander ice cream. However these sauces are just berries and sugar, and I think any Smucker's jelly heated in a sauce pan would be just as effective and delicious. This ice cream was the most thick and creamy of any I've made so far. I'm not sure, but it might have been because I left the ice cream base out in my kitchen overnight because I started the recipe too late in the evening to run the ice cream maker. The recipe called for 3-5 drops of coriander oil. I split the difference with 4. This created a nice flavor, but subtle. I think the recipe could work well with 5 drops, for a more pronounced flavor.
- Brown Butter Almond Brittle is amazingly great. The brittle alone is delicious. I used Marcona almonds from Costco, which have an excellent fresh, crunchy saltiness, and crushed them a bit with a mortar and pestle. The ice cream is very easy, just Jeni's basic base, mixed with butter solids made from melting 3 stocks of butter, letting it settle and pouring off the clarified butter to leave the brown solids at the bottom of the pot. (I poured the clarified butter into a small jar, and put in the refrigerator for future use.) The brittle, in the butter thick ice cream, is immediately addictive - rich and smooth, with an immediate and satisfying Heath Bar-like crunch from the almond brittle, which I generously layered with the ice cream. You will have plenty of brittle left over for candy-snacking later.
- Roasted Pumpkin 5-Spice ice cream is reminiscent of the Sweet Potato (with Torched Marshmallow) ice cream, in that is has a more pureed than creamy mouth fell. This is of course because of the pumpkin, or in my case, the butternut squash. This is an easy ice cream to make, pureed roast pumpkin/squash blended into the cream cheese before incorporation with the cream base. 5-spice is an interesting, nice addition, lending a touch of anise for a more complex flavor profile than the pumpkin alone. This would be a great ice cream to serve at Thanksgiving.
- Ylang-Ylang with Clove and Honeycomb has a floral, perfumed taste. This may sound off-putting, but I encourage you to try it, it's delicious. This ice cream is super easy to make if you have the essential oils - just Jeni's ice cream with a few drops of the essential oils. More interesting is the honeycomb candy, which is basically sugar, corn syrup and honey heated to 296 degrees ("hard crack") and spread on parchment paper on a baking sheet to harden, then cracked into nickel-sized pieces. If you eat this candy straight from the baking tray it's so hard and clingy it will surely rip out your fillings if you try to bite it. Let it sit overnight in the ice cream however, and it takes on a delicious crunch, like an aerated toffee. All-in-all this flavor is well worth trying, especially if you've bought the essential oils. Did I mention it's thick and creamy? ; ) ps I still don't know exactly what ylang-ylang is.