Blueberry Cheesecake Ice Cream

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Oh, do I love ice cream.  I think it’s my favorite food, next to a good macaroni and cheese with applesauce.  Don’t judge me.

I’ve been experimenting in the kitchen with many kinds of ice cream, some have flopped, some have knocked my socks off.  (Well, not literally, because my feet are always cold, and I hate being barefoot.)  I think that this ice cream came somewhere between really good and sinfully delicious.  I say sinfully because with 6 oz of cream cheese and over a cup of cream, it’s hard to be anything else!

I have always been a big fan of cheesecake, so why not combine this with the best food ever invented: ice cream!  Whoever engineered this wonderful combination was a genius.  Probably Ben & Jerry, but what do I know?

I adapted the original recipe because the batter was simply too thick, and I knew that it would produce an ice cream that was impossible to scoop.  Next time I make this (yes, there will be a next time), I’m adding even more cream to yield a smoother frozen dessert.

[Favorite Fruit Here] Cheesecake Ice Cream (Adapted from this Dine O Mite post)

6 oz. cream cheese, cut into chunks
Zest of 1 lemon (I used a teaspoon of lemon juice instead)
3/4 c nonfat Greek yogurt (I use Wegman’s brand 0%)
1 1/2 – 2 cups light cream or half and half
1/2 c sugar
Pinch of sea salt
1 cup frozen or chilled fresh fruit (I used blueberries, perhaps I will make a blueberry sauce next time)

Zest lemon directly into a blender; add sour cream, cream, sugar, salt, and cream cheese.  Puree until smooth, then store in refrigerator for several hours before churning.

Churn in ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions, or until desired consistency is reached.  Add fruit in the last few minutes of churning. Transfer to shallow containers, then to the freezer for a few hours before serving.

Then shamelessly lick the bowl.

Traditional Angel Food Cake

Last weekend I had the urge to bake. I know, it’s so unusual for this to happen! Actually, I’m always in the mood to bake something, so this was no surprise :)

I couldn’t decide on anything, and I knew I wanted to make something with ingredients I already had in my cupboards. So I laid all of my cookbooks out and started scanning, but not even Giada or Ina really had anything that was catching my eye. Until I opened up the Taste of Home Cookbook. Helloooo Angel Food Cake recipe!!

This was perfect, I had everything I needed…until I read more closely. Ingredient #1: 12 egg whites.

12 egg whites?! What?! Why?! There was no way I was going to waste a dozen eggs on this one recipe! What if it didn’t turn out? What if it was a flop? But Kyle is such an encouraging husband :) He told me to just make it. Who cares if you use all of the eggs? Try it! Ahhh….the sweet sound of rationalization. Music to my ears. All I needed was someone to tell me it was okay to whip up all of the fluffy deliciousness that are egg whites into a perfect, foamy angel food cake. And it was well worth it!

Traditional Angel Food Cake (Adapted from the Taste of Home Cookbook)

1 1/2 cups egg whites (about 12 eggs)
1 cup cake flour
1 1/2 cups plus 2 Tbs sugar, divided
1 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
2 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp salt

1. Place egg whites in a large mixing bowl and let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, sift flour and 3/4 cup plus 2 Tbs sugar together twice; set aside.

2. Add cream of tartar, extract, and salt to egg whites; beat on medium speed until soft peaks form. Gradually add remaining sugar, 2 Tbs at a time, beating on high until stiff peaks form and sugar is dissolved. Gradually fold in flour mixture, a fourth at a time.

3. Gently spoon into an ungreased 10-in. tube pan. Cut through the batter with a knife to remove air pockets. Bake on the lowest oven rack at 375 for 30-35 minutes or until top springs back when lightly touched and cracks feel dry. Immediately invert pan; cool completely, about 1 hour.

4. Run a knife around sides and center tube of cake pan. Remove cake to a serving plate. Serve and enjoy!

Annnnd we’re back!

I’ve made a goal this year. Well, more than one. Firstly, Kyle and I have decided that we are going to camp more. Helloooo, Maryland state parks! Really starting to think that since it’s so cold outside we’ll soon be pitching the tent in the living room, but who cares? I’m thinking this might have to happen tomorrow night.

But I have another goal. And it is to start this very food blog. It’s been on the agenda for so long, and I’m finally getting to it. I will admit, I’m no photographer, but I really do love learning about and making all kinds of foods, so expect to see a variety! Over the past year, I’ve realized how important it is to watch what we eat. And I don’t mean just buy whatever says it’s fat free, organic, and reduced whatever. What I’m talking about is trying to eat whole, natural, homemade foods that leave out all of the artificialness. And we’re not perfect, but this is my attempt to make our diet a little healthier along the way. All in my teeny, tiny kitchen. :)

Fresh Corn Salad

Found this recipe in a Better Homes & Gardens magazine over vacation in Emerald Isle! Kyle and I tried it, and it was certainly a hit. First of all, what’s better than fresh sweet corn off the cob?! I was unsure of the white balsamic vinegar at first, but it was a pleasant surprise – not as strong as the traditional dark balsamic vinegar. This is a great recipe for a picnic or to go alongside a summer meal! It’s cool and refreshing for your palate.

Fresh Corn Salad

ingredients
8 ears corn, shucked
6 fresh tomatoes, chopped (I used roma)
2 cucumbers, peeled, seeded, and chopped
2 green onions, chopped (I used a regular onion, made it sweeter)
1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 jalapeño, seeded and chopped
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
4 Tbs white balsamic vinegar
3 Tbs extra virgin olive oil

directions
1. Preheat grill to medium-high. Brush corn with a little olive oil. Grill corn until lightly browned, turning often to cook evenly; cool. When cool enough to handle, cut corn from cobs.

2. Toss corn with tomatoes, cucumbers, green onions, pepper, jalapeño, cilantro, vinegar, and the 3 tablespoons of olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Toss and marinate at least 2 hours in the refrigerator before serving. Bring to room temperature to serve. Makes 8 servings.

*Cook’s Note I steamed the corn instead of grilling, and also want to remind you to use gloves when cutting a jalapeño!