This is my 100th post!
I didn’t think about milestones when I started this blog a year and a half ago. I just wanted to share funny stories and talk about food. But when my 100th post rolled around, I felt like I should prepare something special. I racked my brain for days trying to come up with the perfect dish that would exemplify my food style. I’d sit in front of my computer with one scoop of ice cream and ponder food.
Day after day, scoop after scoop–and nothing. It’s hard to pick a favorite dish when you love food. Bacon cheeseburgers popped into mind, but they are reserved for my wedding anniversary. It’s a tradition we started our first few years of marriage when we had limited funds. Now that we have two children in private school, we have limited funds again and continue to celebrate our anniversary with bacon cheeseburgers.
My eureka moment came after a visit with my mom and younger sister–who’s still pregnant, as she says every time you see her, even when you don’t ask. On my mom’s kitchen table were six boxes of ginger lemon cremes, stacked and waiting for me. I love these cookies! But I only buy them during the holidays when they go from $5 a box to $2 a box.
After I said “Hey!” to everyone I stared at the those darling little cookies. Then I looked at my mom, who pointed to my sister. She corralled her boxes of cookies in her arms like she was protecting a pile of gold she’d prospected from the backyard.
After several minutes of begging, I made her realize that five boxes were more than enough to satisfy her craving and feed that “big ol’ baby she was carrying.”
“Hello, my lovelies,” I said after kissing my very own box of ginger lemon delights. I now had the perfect accompaniment to my favorite brainstorming snack. “Ah ha!”
My favorite food that exemplifies me is…dun dun duuuuuuun…ICE CREAM! I loooove ice cream and I have the hips to prove it. Ice cream just makes me happy, and it doesn’t take much–one scoop will do me just fine. Even though homemade ice cream is more expensive than store-bought, I make my own all the time. I’m on my third ice cream machine in 12 years. Making it myself allows me to control the ingredients and play around with flavors. Can you say chocolate covered bacon maple ice cream?
I’d crumpled a couple of cookies on my ice cream and it was perfect. Then I remembered that Trader Joe’s had this awesome lemon ice cream with Triple Ginger Snaps in it. I re-created the ice cream using my favorite French vanilla ice cream recipe. The result was fantastic. The ice cream had a mild ginger lemon flavor with chunks of cream cookies folded in it–way more cookies than the Trader Joe’s version (another benefit of homemade ice cream.) Since my husband was out of town I tested the ice cream with two of my neighbors. Let’s just say I’m still queen of the cul-de-sac.
One hundred blog posts is a big accomplishment and ice cream is the perfect celebration food. I appreciate the opportunity to be a part of the food blog scene. Thank you all for supporting me and my ramblings. I’m looking forward to the next one hundred posts, and I’m committed to posting more recipes that include chocolate, bourbon and bacon. That’s definitely an ice cream flavor waiting to happen.
Ginger Lemon Cookie Ice Cream, inspired by Trader Joe’s Lemon Triple Ginger Cookie Ice Cream
Makes 1 quart
I used Trader Joe’s Uncrystallized Candied Ginger in the base because I had some in the pantry. Use whatever candied ginger that’s available. If you don’t have any on hand don’t worry about it the ice cream is still amazing without it.
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1/3 cup lemon juice
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
2 teaspoons lemon zest (1-2 lemons)
1 ounce candied ginger, optional
6 large egg yolks, slightly beaten
2 cups heavy cream
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup chopped ginger lemon sandwich cookies (recommended: Carr Ginger Lemon Cremes)
Heat the milk, lemon juice, sugar and salt in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring to dissolve. When it begins to simmer, add the lemon zest and candied ginger and simmer for an additional minute.
Remove the milk mixture from the heat, cover and steep for 20 minutes. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl. Discard the lemon zest and candied ginger. Re-heat the milk over medium-low heat. Whisk 1/2 cup of the milk into the egg yolks. Then stir the egg yolk mixture into the milk.
Cook over low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon until the mixture reaches 175 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer and coats the back of a spoon. Do not boil. Strain the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a medium bowl.
Cool for 20 minutes. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate until cold, at least 6 hours or overnight.
Stir in the heavy cream and vanilla extract. Pour the liquid into an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
When the ice cream is almost frozen, stir in the chopped cookies.
Transfer the ice cream to an air-tight container and harden in the freezer.