Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams

Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at Home, Jeni Britton Bauer, Artisan 2011, $23.95 hardback, 217 pages

Jeni Britton Bauer knows how to lure in customer and cooks. She starts out with homey enthusiasm for her work, endears with tales of early missteps, and sets the hook with ice cream flavors like Coriander Raspberry, Cherry Lambic, Chocolate Cayenne, and Salty Caramel.

By page 10 I’m drooling and rotting around in my cabinets for the ice cream freezer, ready to dive in with her “Quick Take” directions. By page 19, I’m even willing to learn a bit of science in the service of creamy ice cream.

Bauer promises foolproof results for the home confectioner and starts with a base of cream cheese, a milk and cornstarch slurry, cream, and corn syrup to balance moisture and control crystallization.

And that base works. My Lemon Frozen Yogurt came out tart, sweet, and smooooth. After some time softening on the counter, it spoons up dense and satisfying, with not a crystal in sight.

From that base Bauer creates flavors inspired by her neighboring North Market (in Columbus, Ohio) vendors. Seasonal flavors like Maple Ice Cream in the autumn and Backyard Mint Ice Cream in the summer. She makes sophisticated herbal concoctions like Pineapple Piment D’Esepelette Sorbet and hometown favorites like The Buckeye State Ice Cream, honeyed peanut with dark chocolate freckles.

She also mixes sweet and savory. Salted Caramel is this close to being a daredevil dessert cliché, but Bauer pushes the envelope with Beet Ice Cream, Cognac Ice Cream, and Goat Cheese Ice Cream.

And she’s not through playing. There are a rainbow of recipes for push-up pops, sundaes like One Night in Bangkok, and ice cream cakes like Baked Alaska Pie. She instructs on making your own ice cream cones and making macarons for grown-up ice cream sandwiches.

This is ice cream for the adventurous, the passionate, and for breakfast, lunch, and dinner!

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About Appetite for Books

read, cook, eat, repeat
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