Marshmallow Candy Cane Ice Cream

Let me tell you a tragic tale…

There once was a girl who had left her iPod in her car, and wanted to listen to some relaxing music as she went about her morning.  So the girl decided to take her laptop out into her living room and sit it on a ledge, something she has done many times before.

Unfortunately, on said morning, as the girl was reaching for her speaker cord, the laptop crashed to the ground and there was a horrendous black screen that said the hard drive could not be found.

A frantic trip to the computer nerds, and several days of waiting later, the girl was told that her hard drive was toast and nothing could be recovered.

I tell you this cautionary tale as a warning.  Do not wait for “later” to back up your work.  All my pictures… gone.  Except for my Facebook albums, which included all my trips except for Washington, and luckily I still had France on my memory card.  Even though the quality from Facebook won’t be as good as the originals, at least I can still look at them.  Thank goodness I finally got around to printing a copy of my taxes just a couple of months ago.

I felt kind of like Carrie Bradshaw in that episode of Sex and the City where her laptop gets a “sad Mac” and she loses all her work.

See, all life can be related to either Sex and the City  or Friends.

So what’s a girl to do when her lap top is dead?

Jump on the Apple bandwagon and convert from a PC user to a MacBook-er.

We’ll see how this goes.  I had a little trouble figuring out how to connect the power cord so I could plug it in.  And I have a feeling I will miss my right click.

At least now I won’t have to deal with a spastic mouse that jumps all over the place and starts typing where you don’t want it to.  And I’m excited about the iPhoto software.

So FOOD!

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Yes, I had planned to start sharing recipes again right before the tragic incident.

I know it’s winter (well technically winter doesn’t start until the 21st), but you can still eat ice cream!  In fact, candy cane ice cream is almost a requirement at this time of year.

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And you know how I like to take inspiration from scented candles?  Instead of plane ol’ candy cane ice cream, I added some marshmallow fluff because I’d recently purchased a fabulous marshmallow peppermint scented candy.

It did not disappoint.

FYI this ice cream stays quite soft because of all the sugar from all the candy canes (and fluff), but that’s OK.  I like a nice soft serve.

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Marshmallow Candy Cane Ice Cream

adapted from Williams-Sonoma Ice Cream

2 cups blend cream (10%)

1 cup whipping cream

1 1/4 cups sugar

3 tsp vanilla

1/2 cup marshmallow fluff

1 tbsp hot water

45 mini candy canes, crushed finely

In a bowl, combine creams and sugar, stirring until sugar dissolves.  Add vanilla and stir.  Let this sit for about 15 minutes, stirring every now and then, so that the flavors can combine.  Cover and refrigerate for at least 3 – 8 hours.

Pour cream mixture into ice cream maker and freeze per manufacturer instructions.  Mine takes about half an hour.  About 10-15 minutes in, thin your fluff with the hot water and pour into the ice cream maker with the cream.  Continue to freeze.  About five minutes before its done, add in the crushed candy canes.

Ripen by covering and freezing for at least three hours.

To make into a sunday, pour some thinned fluff on top and garnish with crushed candy canes.

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Pina Colada Ice Cream

We’ve already re-visited my love of Boy Bands, now let’s re-visit my other musical tastes of the late 90’s/early millenium, shall we?

During the long, dark drive home from my parent’s cottage, I was bored and still had an hour to go.  There was nothing good on the radio and I was tired of listening to the same songs on my iPod.

That’s when I remembered my CD collection that lives in my console.

This CD collection is housed in one of those zippered books that had pockets in it for CDs to slot into.  It is also adorned with a sewn on moon patch.  Remember when sun and moons were all the rage?

This CD collection is a treasure trove of mixed CD’s that represent various time frames of my late high school/ early university years.  You know, like back before people stopped burning CD’s because everyone got MP3 players or iPods and didn’t need to anymore.

I picked a CD at random and put it in the player and my ears were delighted by such tunes as “If You Could Only See” by Tonic, “Boys of Summer” by Ataris, “All You Wanted” by Michelle Branch, and “I Will Buy You A New Life” by Everclear.

It was great because I had absolutely no idea what song was coming next!  And the memories!

Man, oh man… there’s nothing like a good mixed CD to take you back.

I remembered high school parties, driving around in my friend’s station wagon (well, her parent’s), going off to university, and struggling through Calculus assignments.

You know, back when life was simpler.

Anyway, that CD collection turned my boring drive into a trip down memory lane, and made it much more enjoyable.

Ice cream makes life more enjoyable too.  Especially when it is pina colada flavored.

Summer’s almost over, but it’s not yet, so I’m going to keep living in full-blown summer mode for as long as possible!

Pina Colada Ice Cream

(adapted from Savory Sweet Life and The Kitchen Witch)

2 cup whipping cream

3.4 cup light coconut milk

3/4 cup sugar

1 tsp rum extract

1 tbsp vanilla

1 tsp coconut extract

1 cup crushed pineapple, drained (pretty much what’s left after draining a 14 oz. can)

Combine all ingredients except crushed pineapple in a shallow pan over medium heat.  Stir.  Heat until just starts to lightly bubble.  Take off of heat and stir until all the sugar dissolves.  Let cool to room temperature.

Freeze in ice cream maker per manufacturer instructions.   My insulated freezer bowl style is about 30 minutes.  Add the crushed pineapple during the last five minutes of freezing.

Transfer to a bowl and ripen in freezer about four hours.

Have a great long weekend!

Frosty Treat, An Island Landmark

On Prince Edward Island, there is a little town called Kensington.  And Kensington is home to the best (in my opinion) dairy bar there ever was!

I’ve been going to Frosty Treat, or Frosty’s as my family refers to it, all my life.

My parents went there when they were dating in the ’70s, and it continues to be a family favorite.

Growing up, I didn’t even know it had a name.  We just called it the “dairy bar” and to me, it was the only one that existed.  There’s another dairy bar down the road, but given the choice, I always go with Frosty’s.

Michael wanted to stop at the other one when we were on PEI because he said he wanted to try something new, and I wouldn’t let him.  That’s just blasphemy!  He’s relatively new to the whole PEI thing, so I don’t think he fully understands.

My aunt, from New Brunswick, loves Frosty’s ice cream so much, that when we were little, she would tell my cousins and I that she could smell Frosty’s when she was getting close.  And she always orders her ice cream first, before her meal.

As for meals, well I always order the chicken fingers.  They come with fries, cole slaw, and the most delicious toasted bun (it’s buried under the fries).

And the ice cream!  It`s so creamy and delicious!  The best soft serve there ever was!  And the options!

You can get a chocolate dip.

Nutty dip.

Rainbow roll.

Jimmy.

Flavor burst.

In a waffle cone.

Or, my mom`s favorite, combination, which is white and vanilla soft serve twisted together.

All this talk of ice cream is making me wish I was there right now!

So if you ever find yourself on Prince Edward Island in the summertime, do what Frosty`s TV commercial says and “Don’t drive by, drive in.”  You’ll be glad you did.

Toasted Coconut Ice Cream

Happy Monday!  Did you folks have a nice weekend?  I spent my weekend in the city, and in true Halifax style, it was rainy, foggy, and cold.  Fingers crossed for good weather for this upcoming long weekend.

The brightly colored pants must have worked, because in a truly unusual turn of events, I was social four nights in a row!  And out past 10 o’ clock on three of them.  Perhaps I’m not a ninety year old woman after all?

Thursday night I saw a new friend off as she said farewell to Nova Scotia and begins the next chapter of her life.  Friday night I had a dinner and movie date with my friend Melissa (stay tuned for more on that later).  Saturday night Michael and I had dinner with a friend from pharmacy school and his fiance, who were visiting from Moncton.  And on Sunday, my sister and brother in-law stopped by on their way through town and we had supper at the new Thai restaurant.  First time I ever ordered curry somewhere.  I feel so worldly.

It was really nice to catch up with old friends.  It’s nice to be around people who know where you’ve come from and have shared experiences with you.  Staying connected with people is something that I should make more of an effort at.

Ice cream is a good thing to connect to people with.  Who doesn’t like ice cream?  And why not make it coconut ice cream?

In case you missed it the first million times I mentioned it, I LOVE COCONUT!

This is a semi-new obsession.  It was really Hawaii that pushed my “like” of coconut over the edge into full blown “need-to-incorporate-coconut-into-everything-I-do” mode.

And I also love my Shopping Channel purchased KitchenAid stand mixer with bonus ice cream maker attachment.  I may have mentioned that once or twice as well.

If you’ve got the right equipment, it’s really easy to make ice cream.  I promise.  And this stuff is good!

It also tastes great mixed with coffee and ice in the blender.

Toasted Coconut Ice Cream
(slightly adapted from Ultimate Mexican 2011 ed.) 
 
1 370 ml can partly skimmed evaporated milk
1/2 cup lite coconut milk
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup whipping cream
1 tbsp lime juice  
1 tbsp vanilla
1/2 cup shredded sweetened coconut, toasted *
 
Combine evaporated milk, coconut milk, and sugar in a bowl and stir until sugar dissolves.  Stir in whipping cream and vanilla, then stir in the toasted coconut.  Place in fridge to chill at least 8 hours or overnight.
 
Add lime juice.  Freeze in ice cream maker per manufacturer instructions.  For my insulated bowl style one, it was about 20 minutes.
 
“Ripen” by transferring to a container and freezing for about 4 hours to let the ice cream harden so you don’t have a melty disaster on your hands.
 
* Toast coconut by heating a pan on medium heat.  Add coconut.  Stir until fragrant and starts to brown.  Watch it doesn’t burn.