Recently a good friend of mine got the job of her life. Unfortunately, the job is all the way across the country in Arizona. ;_;
The bad news is that we will now be separated by a couple thousand miles.
The good news is that I have now strategically placed a good friend in the desert for visiting purposes! Huzzah!
In honor of her leaving I threw a small party and made a special dessert – her favorite ice cream flavor, mint with chocolate!
One of the things I really like about this recipe is that it hits all my “ice cream high points”. Some of the recipes I’ve pulled up have demanded 8 egg yolks for just 1 pint of ice cream. While I love myself some soft, custardy goodness, I have a hard time justifying 8 yolks for such a small amount of payback. This recipe calls only for 5 and yields an entire quart. Success!
Feeling that just mint ice cream wasn’t fancy enough, I recalled a Joy the Baker post recently in which she had fun hand-dipping sugar cones to add to her desserts. I thought it’d be a classy and easy-to-accomplish bit of flair, so bought a dozen waffle cones (my preference) at the store. Does it get much easier than “Melt chocolate. Dip cones in the chocolate.”? No, I don’t think it does. Plus, who doesn’t like an excuse to use sprinkles?
The general consensus on the ice cream was that it was weird at first, but you quickly developed a taste for it. I think we thought of it as “weird” when first trying it was because it had such a natural mint flavor as opposed to a more traditional super-sweet peppermint. It was definitely unexpected, but after a few bites very good! Refreshing, with little hints of chocolate. And perfect in a chocolate-dipped cone!
This is definitely a flavor I’d make again, and probably will; it’s a light, tasty ice cream that goes great with a drizzle of chocolate. I wish I’d taken a better picture of a complete chocolate-dipped cone, but frankly they just got eaten too fast!
By David Lebovitz! A superb recipe!
By Joy the Baker!
My version was a slacker-version thereof (melt chocolate, dip cones, add sprinkles), but Joy’s has so much more class and her post inspired me to try it in the first place.
Here’s to another round of Daring Bakers!
This month’s challenge was brought to us by Mallory from A Sofa in the Kitchen, and she had everyone making Panna Cotta and Florentine Cookies under the “Creamy Dreamy Crunchy Sweet February” theme. An adjective or two too many, perhaps, but still tasty…and very accurate.
This was a much appreciated respite from January’s DB challenge, which was a dessert I largely couldn’t pronounce and required ingredients I didn’t already own. I didn’t know what panna cotta or florentine cookies were either, but they were graciously much more straight forward than a wordy french pastry.
The Panna Cotta I decided to make for my mother’s birthday dinner dessert. It was really good timing; my brother and I had decided to go with an italian dinner theme for her, so the panna cotta fit in perfectly. Since my mother, like me, is a huge chocolate fan, I went ahead and made it pure chocolate with a few extra flairs.
I whipped up some whipping cream and added mint extract and a few drops of green food coloring. Adding a little swirl of the whipped cream plus a sprinkle of dark chocolate chips to each glass gave the dessert a touch of pizazz. This dessert was exceptionally creamy and delicious, and the dollop of mint cream in each glass gave the entire dessert a slight mint flavor as well. Very tasty.
The florentine cookies were a little more challenging than the panna cotta, but mostly because I, as usual, started out cutting a corner (some things never change). We were instructed to place the cookies three inches apart on the baking sheet, which I dismissed, for some reason, as foolish. Thusly, my first batch of cookies weren’t quite spaced out enough, so I received one giant florentine cookie instead of 9 separate ones.
Abashed by my bravado, I toned down my next few batches in order to produce something hopefully slightly resembling real florentines. Funny, following the instructions worked.
Since I made these two desserts several weeks apart, it actually didn’t occur to me to infuse this cookie with some mint too…though now I really wish I had. Instead I didn’t vary much (read: at all) from the given recipe and just worked with the ingredients I had sitting in my pantry. Maybe not as creative, but still delicious.
Even without the chocolate the florentines were good; I may or may not have had a few small spoonfuls of the dough/batter on its own. >.> I don’t typically use oats in my cookies and these tasted delicious with all the sugar and butter mixed in (but then, what doesn’t?). Chocolate only served to make them better.
These are great recipes that are fairly straight forward, but can still easily impress. I’m not sure florentine cookies are my favorite, but they’re definitely a good “every once and awhile” cookie. The panna cotta was fantastic though, and when I make it again I’ll definitely get a little more creative and go for some layers, as was suggested in Mallory’s original post. Give it a try sometime; I bet you’ll be pleased!