We Scream for Ice Cream

97 degrees – that’s the high today, and that’s here in New England.  Even the most dedicated home cook has mixed feelings about cooking in weather like this.  All I want to do is sit in a hammock with a book while someone brings me a cool drink once in a while.  Or, better yet, a dish of ice cream.

Pretty much nothing compares with homemade ice cream in the summer.  I tend to make just two kinds: mint chocolate chip and cherry chocolate chip.  But when I just have to visit new  frontiers in frozen dessert, I go to one of my two favorite sources: A Passion for Ice Cream, by Emily Luchetti, or The Perfect Scoop, by David Lebovitz.

The Perfect Scoop is what you might call a dictionary of ice cream recipes–most of them slightly tweaked and twisted from your everyday flavors:  basil ice cream, say, or white chocolate ice cream, or my favorite, malted milk ice cream.

Emily Luchetti’s book, on the other hand, is ice-cream-plus: in every recipe ice cream’s just the basement of a 2 or 3-story house.  It might be the start of a milkshake, or a cake, or an ice cream sandwich.  None of us lives a life full of certainty, but one thing I can tell you is that just as soon as I had had my first bite of Frozen Key Lime Pie with Crushed Sugar Cone Crust and Macadamia Nut Cream, I pretty much felt I had completed what I came here to do.  And during these lazy, hot, summer days, you really can’t ask for a feeling better than that.


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