Old Key West Lime Pie

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I don’t know about you, but we’re in the dregs of winter here. The snow is dirty along the side of the road and we’re all sick and tired of the cold, gray days. So what better way to combat these dreary winter days than with a bright, tart key lime ice cream pie?

This pie just oozes the laid-back feel of Disney’s Old Key West resort. Just like the traditional Key Lime Pie, it’s creamy and transporting, reminding you of warm sunny Florida.

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This ice cream pie, by the way, is delicious. It starts with a graham cracker crust, which is filled with delicious, creamy lime ice cream and topped with whipped cream. I used a store-bought crust for mine (gasp!) because I was in a hurry. Please feel free to do the same, or use your favorite recipe for a graham cracker crust. The ice cream gets its flavor from both lime juice and lime zest. A lot of flavor comes from the zest, but I find that nothing gives that great “pucker” flavor like the juice. Once frozen, I pour the ice cream into the shell and freeze it without the whipped cream. That’s just personal preference for me. I just don’t like the texture of frozen whipped cream. But it’s totally up to you.

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This ice cream recipe makes a little more than you need for one pie, so enjoy the extra all for yourself!

Enjoy!

Old Key West Lime Pie

1 9″ graham cracker crust (homemade or store-bought)

Lime Ice Cream

2 cups whole milk

1-1/2 cups cream

3/4 cup sugar

1 Tbsp. corn syrup

4 egg yolks

Pinch of salt

1 tsp vanilla

Zest of two limes, peeled with a vegetable peeler into long strips

1/4 cup lime juice

1/4 cup sugar

Whipped Cream

1/2 cup heavy cream

2 Tbsp sugar (or to taste)

1/2 tsp. vanilla

In a large saucepan, combine milk, cream, 3/4 cup sugar and corn syrup and bring to a boil. Cook for five minutes and remove from heat. In a heatproof bowl, whisk egg yolks with salt. Slowly add about 1 cup of the hot cream mixture to the egg yolks, whisking the whole time. Pour the egg/cream mix back to the saucepan, slowly, stirring constantly. Return the pan to the heat and cook over low heat until slightly thickened (5-7 minutes), stirring often. Pour into a large bowl, add vanilla and lime zest.

Meanwhile, combine lime juice and remaining 1/4 cup of sugar. Bring to a slow simmer and cook for 5 minutes. Pour into bowl with ice cream base. Chill completely.

Pour ice cream base into container of your ice cream machine and freeze according to manufacturer’s suggestions. Pour ice cream into pie shell and freeze in coldest part of your freezer for at least six hours.

For the whipped topping, pour heavy cream into the bowl of an electric mixer, fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat at increasing speeds until soft peaks form. Slowly add the sugar to taste (approx. 2 Tbsp) and vanilla. Chill until ready to serve.

Remove pie from freezer about 10 minutes before serving. Top with fresh whipped cream. and additional lime slices or wedges, if desired.

 

 

 

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No Way Jose: Peanut Butter + Chocolate Ice Cream

No Way Jose Title

I do believe that Beaches  & Cream at Disney’s Beach Club may be one of my favorite restaurants at WDW. What’s not to love about this old-fashioned soda jerk style hole-in-the-wall? The music, the BEST cast members, the food, and (of course) the ice cream!

Which leads me to the epic-ness that is the No Way Jose sundae. This one just may change the ice cream game. I know that sounds absurd, but seriously, my husband first had one on our honeymoon three years ago, and still compares ice cream to that one moment in time.

For those who have not yet tried it, the classic sundae starts with vanilla and chocolate ice cream, is covered with hot fudge AND melty peanut butter, then smothered with whipped cream and Reece’s Pieces. Yep. Let’s all just take a moment of silence in awe of such a marvelous creation.

And now that you’re all wishing for some No Way Jose goodness, may I present the No Way Jose Ice Cream!

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So really, this should be called “No Way Jose: Peanut Butter + Chocolate + Peanut Butter + Chocolate Ice Cream,” but honestly, that just got to be a bit too long, even for me. It starts with an absolutely amazing peanut butter ice cream base. Seriously. This may be one of my favorite starting places in all of ice cream. It tastes like a frozen version of my mom’s almost-famous peanut butter frosting. It would be perfectly acceptable to stop right there, but that’s not how we do things here. And that’s certainly not reminiscent of a No Way Jose.

Next step: make some gooey, chewy, hot fudge sauce. I used the recipe from on of my all-time favorite books, Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at Home. Be sure to use a good quality, high-cacao chocolate here. I used Ghirardelli 70% cacao because. well, Ghirardelli & Disney Springs. It just felt right.

Ghirardelli

And mixing in to all of that – chopped up Reece’s peanut butter cup minis. There it is – Peanut Butter + Chocolate + Peanut Butter + Chocolate.

Reeces

And of course, it’s only right to top this with some of that leftover hot fudge, right? And I would totally stand up and applaud you if you added some whipped cream and Reece’s Pieces at the end.

I think at this point, it starts to become

I think at this point, it starts to become “No Freaking Way Jose” it is that good.

No Way Jose Fudgy Deliciousness

Enjoy!

No Way Jose: Peanut Butter + Chocolate Ice Cream

Peanut Butter Base:

2 cups whole milk

1-1/2 cups heavy cream

3/4 cup sugar

1 Tbsp. corn syrup

3 egg yolks

Hefty pinch of salt

3/4 cup peanut butter

In a large pot, mix together the cream, milk, sugar, and corn syrup. Bring to a boil and cook for five minutes. In a separate dish, whisk together the egg yolks and salt. When the cream mixture has cooked for five minutes, remove from heat and slowly add about 1 cup of the hot mixture to the egg yolks, whisking constantly. Pour the now-hot egg yolk mixture back into the pot with the remaining cream, return to low heat, and cook until slightly thickened. Remove from heat, pour into a bowl, and whisk in all of the peanut butter. Cool and chill completely.

When chilled, pour into the base of your ice cream machine and churn according to manufacturer’s recommendations.

Hot Fudge Sauce slightly adapted from Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at Home, by Jeni Britton Bauer:

1/2 cup water

1/3 cup sugar

2 Tbsp. corn syrup

2 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder

4 oz. bitter or semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped

Combine and sugar in a medium saucepan and cook until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and whisk in cocoa powder. Stir until smooth, then add the chopped chocolate. Allow to sit for about five minutes then whisk until it is completely smooth  and glossy. Allow to cool slightly.

To assemble the ice cream, start with a layer of peanut butter ice cream (about 1/2 of finished amount). Top with as much fudge as you would like (but head’s up: It’s pretty rich, so plan accordingly) and a handful of the chopped Reece’s Minis. Repeat with remaining ice cream, and finish with decorative swirls of fudge and Reece’s. Freeze for at least four hours.

“Belle”-Berry Sour Cream Ice Cream

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Belle-berry Sour Cream Ice Cream

“Little town, it’s a quiet village; every day like the one before;

Little town, full of little people waking up to say: Bonjour!”

Thus begins one of the most magical shows in all of Walt Disney World. Yes, it may be dated at this point (and hello! What ever happened to Four-For-A-Dollar?), but it’s still a must-do for our family every.time. I still remember the first time I saw the show and just wishing I could be Belle, especially during that opening song. I mean, she skitters around the townspeople with absolute grace, puts Gaston in his place, has a perfect moment in the spotlight when she wants her adventure, and the BOOKS! Come on! Who could want more?

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Belle-Berry Sour Cream Ice Cream

This ice cream recipe was inspired by those first few moments of Beauty and the Beast Live on Stage. The color is perfectly reminiscent of Belle’s famous blue dress, and the sour cream adds a tang that just might make you feel that longing for adventure (in the great wide somewhere, of course). And personally, I think the combination is just perfect (and the friends we shared it with seemed to think so, too 😉 ).

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This recipe is definitely an easy one to pull together, just mix a pint of blueberries with a little bit of sugar and heat it up till it’s a little syrupy, then let it cool. The ice cream base is very close to my regular base (cream, milk, sugar, egg yolks & salt), but I cut out some of the cream (healthy!!) and add the sour cream right at the end.

Belle-Berry Sour Cream Ice Cream

Enjoy!!

Belle-Berry Sour Cream Ice Cream Recipe:

Blueberries: 

1 pint fresh blueberries

1/4 c. sugar

Mix blueberries and sugar in a small saucepan and cook until it just starts to bubble. It should be slightly syrupy. Set aside to cool.

Ice Cream Base:

2 c. milk

1 c. cream

3/4 c. sugar

4 egg yolks

Pinch of salt

1 tsp. vanilla

1 c. sour cream

In a large saucepan, combine milk, cream, and sugar. Bring to a boil and cook for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, combine the egg yolks with salt. When the cream mixture has cooked, remove from heat and gradually add about 1 cup of the hot cream to the egg yolks, stirring constantly. Slowly add the egg & cream mixture back into the pot with the remaining cream, stirring the whole time. Return the pot to a low heat, and cook and stir until slightly thickened (should be about 4-5 minutes). Remove from heat. Whisk in the sour cream and vanilla and stir in the prepared blueberries. Cool completely and chill in refrigerator.

Pour into the canister of your ice cream machine and freeze according to manufacturer’s suggestions. Transfer to freezer-safe container and freeze at least 4 hours before serving.

Ice Cream How-To: Keep Fruit from Becoming Ice Blocks

Creamy, soft-frozen blueberries = Delicious. Frozen solid blueberry ice cubes = blech, just blech.

Creamy, soft-frozen blueberries = Delicious. Frozen solid blueberry ice cubes = blech, just blech.

We’ve all had it – delicious, creamy ice cream that tastes like a dream come true…Until you bite into a frozen chunk of fruit that has the flavor of an ice cube that’s been sitting in the bottom of the freezer for 3 months. There has to be a way to get that fresh fruit flavor without these ice blocks, right?

Yes!! There is!!

The secret: Cook the fruit with just a little bit of sugar.

I generally estimate about 1/4 cup of sugar for a pint of fruit. Heat them together either on the stovetop or roast in the oven, just until the sugar melts. If you’re cooking it on the stove, the fruit will become slightly syrupy. Usually takes about 5 minutes over medium heat. If you’re roasting your fruit in the oven (GREAT for strawberries), cook them at 375 degrees for about 10 minutes.

Now you may be wondering, how does this work? Is it really so simple? Here’s the thing. Fruit is full of water. That’s what makes it so juicy and yummy. But if you just add all of that water-filled fruit to your ice cream base and freeze it, you get fruit-shaped ice cubes because the water doesn’t have anywhere to go. It’s almost like mixing oil and water – the water just stays all by itself and refuses to get all friendly with those ice cream particles. So what does sugar do? It acts almost like a glue when heated up with the fruit. The water in fruit LOVES sugar and basically gives it a big ole hug. And guess what!! Cream loves sugar too!! It’s like a group hug!! (Clearly I am NOT a scientist). So the sugar helps the water mingle with the cream and keeps it from freezing solid. It’s a beautiful thing, really. 🙂

Now get on out there and make some yummy, fruity ice cream!

African Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

African Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

African Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

Disney’s Animal Kingdom is quickly becoming one of my favorite theme parks. I remember as a kid I didn’t quite “get it.” But now, I love to just wander through the park, seeing all of the absolutely amazing details and finding the hidden walks and trails, including the Pangani Forest Exploration Trail in Africa. The pathway curves along through lush plants and exotic wildlife, including hippos, gorillas, and bright colorful birds.

African Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

Now imagine you’re wandering along the trail and you see a small path veer off to the side that you’ve never noticed before. Feeling adventurous (after all, you’re in Africa, right?) you follow it and find yourself surrounded by dense vegetation, only to break through and see a thatch-roofed stand offering just one thing: The. Best. Vanilla. Ice. Cream. … Ever. You can just see it, right? Sounds perfectly like some hidden magic that Disney would include in their theme parks. Well, if it ever happens, this would be the ice cream.

African Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

This isn’t a plain-Jane vanilla ice cream. The rich cream and sweet milk are highlighted, instead of over-shadowed by, the star of the show: The Madagascar Vanilla Bean. Now, I don’t know how things are where you live, but around here, vanilla beans pretty much cost about as much as an entire meal. But every now and then, it’s worth it. And this is one of those times. You cannot believe how much flavor you will get out of just one of these unassuming, glorious beans. Trust me.

African Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

The recipe couldn’t be easier. It’s my normal sweet cream base, except that you scrape the seeds out of a vanilla bean and add the seeds AND the bean shell (is it called a shell? A husk?) into the base before you bring it to a boil. I just made traditional vanilla bean ice cream, but this would be a FANTASTIC base to make for my Artist Point Berry Cobbler Ice Cream or to add any other mix-ins you can think of.

And of course, one bit and you’ll think you discovered the most perfect treat on an exotic (Disney) African jungle trek. 🙂

African Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

2 cups whole milk

1-1/2 cups heavy cream

3/4 cup sugar

1 Tbsp corn syrup

3 egg yolks

Pinch of salt

1 Madagascar vanilla bean, split lengthwise, seeds scraped out

In a large pot, mix together the milk, cream, sugar, corn syrup, and vanilla bean seeds and husk/shell. Bring to a boil and cook for five minutes. In a separate dish, stir together the egg yolks and salt. When cream mixture has cooked at a boil for five minutes, remove from heat and slowly add about 1 cup of the liquid to the egg yolks (try not to get the shell of the vanilla bean in here), stirring constantly. Pour the now-hot egg yolks back into the pot with the remaining cream, return to low heat, and cook until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes.

Remove from heat, pour into a heat-safe container, cool completely and chill. When chilled, pour into the base of your ice cream machine and churn according to manufacturer’s recommendations. Pour into a freezer-proof container and freeze at least 4 hours before serving.