The premise of most food blogs is simple. Daily posts singing the praises of delicious food. The constant barrage that everything food related is whimsical, fun and easy. The overall tone brims with positivity punctuated with a plethora of exclamation points demanding you try it; concludes with very pretty pictures.
I plan on having pretty pictures. Not now but someday. Today my photography fetish is on hold due to a learning curve of my new camera. However, the rest of the time I have no intention of following the trends. First off, I certainly cannot maintain a genuinely upbeat demeanor over everything food related. After all, there is food shopping which happens to be the bane of my existence. I love to cook. I HATE to shop. Actually hate is not a strong enough word. It is my nemesis.
Mostly, I shop at the supermarket that is the cheapest, as does everyone else. These trips don’t resemble anything they show you on TV. No one is coming from a fashion shoot, smiling, recyclable bag in tow. This is general population shopping represented by a diverse and often disgusting group. Maybe you are lucky enough to have a similar bunch; the ‘still in my pj’s at four thirty in the afternoon’ shopper. The ‘malodorous pervert whose rank aroma perfumes the air for two or more aisles’ shopper. The ‘cough phlegm all over hands and touch every piece of fruit’ shopper. The list goes on and on. Someday, I will have the financial resources to have someone shop for me but in the meantime I am cursed. Unhappily I traipse aisle to aisle, begging those shoppers who won’t release their terror grip from their half-filled carriages to please excuse me.
There are days when I’ve managed to make it relatively unscathed through the aisles but hardly ever through checkout with my mood intact. No matter my efforts at ordering the bagger around I leave lugging improperly filled grocery bags home only to be disappointed that those unblemished tomatoes I worried myself in picking out have been completely molested. Those flawless bananas that traveled from El Salvador unblemished somehow can’t make the last 10 yards from my car to the kitchen without bumps and bruises.
At this point you may wonder why you should read on if I plan on telling long winded opinionated digressions that may have nothing to do with the recipe below it. You are your own person and can certainly just scroll down the page to the recipe. However, there will be a time, and probably soon, when you find yourself behind an inconsiderate shopper, that person who has no idea that anyone else exists, the person blocking the entire ice cream section hanging onto their unpaid groceries like a cart of gold. You will be annoyed; you will think of me. We will share a knowing glance. Maybe it won’t happen at the store itself but when you go home to find your delicate items crushed beneath several large can of diced tomatoes; again you will think of me. I will call the inept bagger disgusting names on your behalf, expressions that will make a sailor blush. Then there will be the day you come out to the parking lot to find three carts terrorizing your car like an unruly gang. Right after you finish muttering your expletives you will think of me, ranting my own stream of obscenities in a far off supermarket and we will bond. You will remember this rant and know that you are not alone.
I cannot promise a site oozing with nothing but positivity but I can promise a bit of honesty, the occasional voice of dissent and delicious recipes. Make sure you have these ingredients on your next shopping list and try this ice cream. It is heaven on earth. Eat, Drink and Be Merry, Lisa
Cinnamon Ice Cream
Quick Note – Use both cinnamon sticks as well as ground cinnamon. The sticks add a spicy heat and a layer of depth that you wouldn’t get with just the ground spice.
Making ice cream doesn’t require special skills as much as it requires patience. No matter how fantastic it smells resign yourself to the fact that you may make it today but will enjoy tomorrow.
1 ½ cup whole milk
1 ½ cup heavy cream
1 cup granulated sugar
4 (3 inch) cinnamon sticks
¼ teaspoon vanilla
3 egg yolks
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
Heat the milk, cream, sugar and cinnamon sticks in a medium saucepan. Slowly bring to a simmer while continually stirring the mixture with a heat proof spatula. Plan on a little patience in this process, you don’t want to scald the milk. Continue to cook the cream mixture for about 10-15 minutes. In a small bowl whisk the egg yolks completely. Take a measuring cup and scoop out some of the hot cream mixture and stream it ever so slowly into the egg yolks, whisking the entire time. It is important to do this slowly so you don’t curdle the eggs. This warms the eggs so you can now take that eggy cream and stream it back into the saucepan. Add the vanilla. Stir in the cinnamon. Lower the heat on the stove. The mixture should barely bubble. Continue to stir and cook this mixture until it coats the back of a spoon. This is your custard base.
Take off the heat and plunge the entire saucepan into a larger bowl filled with ice. Keep the saucepan in the ice bath and occasionally stir for 15 minutes or so. Remove the cinnamon sticks with a slotted spoon and discard them. Chill this mixture in the refrigerator. (I personally have worked myself into a frenzy by this point and want to hurry up and put it in the ice cream maker already but it will really make your life so much easier to chill the cream thoroughly. Trust me.)
Take the mixture out of the fridge once chilled and freeze in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s directions.