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THE NIBBLE’s Gourmet News & Views

Trends, Products & Items Of Note In The World Of Specialty Foods

This is the blog section of THE NIBBLE. Read all of our content on,
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Archive for Ice Cream/Sorbet/Frozen Yogurt

TIP OF THE DAY: Decorate Your Ice Cream Cones


Decorate your ice cream cones with a topping and whipped cream. Photo courtesy
Quest Nutrition.


Another tip for National Ice Cream Month: cones with toppings!

Those who buy cones at a scoop shops know the joy of selecting toppings (and chagrin that you want more than will fit on a scoop of ice cream). Why not port the practice to your home?

You don’t even have to buy sprinkles. Use what you have at home:

  • Bananas, berries or other fruit
  • Cereal/granola (we like Cheerios, Corn Flakes or Raisin Bran)
  • Cookies, crushed
  • Candies (junior Mints)
    The finishing touch: whipped cream. You can buy Reddi-Whip in vanilla or chocolate flavors; or if you have a cream whipper, make a gourmet flavor.


    Instead (or in addition to) whipped cream, you can dip and decorate your cones:

  • With sanding sugar or edible glitter
  • With sprinkles
    It takes only a minute to change a perfectly yummy ice cream cone into something wonderful.


    RECIPE: White Chocolate Ice Box Pie

    Yesterday, we explored the history and glories of icebox cake. Today we present the icebox pie

    Unlike yesterday’s recipe, this one does require a bit of baking—just 10 to 15 minutes in the oven. You make the filling while the crust bakes. Then, into the fridge it goes to chill and set the filling.

    This recipe has a white chocolate and cream cheese filling swirled with fresh raspberries with a buttery crust made from vanilla wafers. vanilla wafer crust. It’s cool and creamy and sweet and refreshing. Just the thing to satisfy your summertime sweet tooth!

    This Raspberry White Chocolate Icebox Pie was developed by Jennifer McHenry of Bake Or Break, and sent to us by

    Prep time is 25 minutes, cook time (for the crust) is 15 minutes.


    Ingredients For A 9-Inch Pie

  • 7 ounces vanilla wafers, finely crushed
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 6 ounces white chocolate (we use Lindt bars or
    Guittard chips, the best chips on the market)
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 3 ounces raspberries, rinsed and dried


    White chocolate with raspberries icebox pie. Photo courtesy Bake Or Break | Go Bold With Butter.



    Our favorite affordable white chocolate is Lindt, widely available in the U.S., MSRP $3.99 for a 4.4-ounce bar. For pricier gourmet brands, here’s our article on the best white chocolate bars.



    1. PREHEAT oven to 350°F. Lightly butter 9-inch tart or pie pan.

    2. COMBINE the crushed vanilla wafers and butter until thoroughly mixed. Press mixture firmly and evenly into the bottom and up the sides of prepared pan. Bake 12 to 15 minutes, or until crust is lightly browned and dry. Set the crust aside to cool.

    3. PLACE the white chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl. Heat at half-power in the microwave in 30-second increments, until the chocolate melts when stirred. Set aside to cool.

    4. BEAT the cooled chocolate, using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat cream cheese, sugar and vanilla until smooth and creamy.

    5. PLACE the heavy cream in a large, chilled mixing bowl. Using an electric mixer with a whisk attachment, beat at medium-high speed until soft peaks form. Gently fold the whipped cream into the white chocolate mixture. Transfer the mixture to the cooled pie crust and spread evenly.


    6. PLACE the raspberries in a blender or food processor and process until puréed. Use a small spoon to drop the raspberries over the top of the pie filling. Use a thin knife to swirl the raspberries into the filling.

    7. REFRIGERATE the pie for at least 2 hours before serving.



    TOP PICK OF THE WEEK: Amorino Gelato


    The signature cone, served in petals in as
    many flavors as you like. Photo courtesy
    Amorino Gelato.


    Every year prior to July, National Ice Cream Month, we look for a great new brand of ice cream to review. This year, we were not disappointed: Amorino Gelato, the acclaimed European gelato and coffee chain, has come to the U.S.

    The gelato and sorbetto—celestial, awesome, fill in your favorite superlative here—is our new favorite ice cream and sorbet. Everything is as good as it can be (our thought: “to die for”), sometimes jaw-droppingly so (don’t overlook the Chocolate Sorbetto—no dairy—is like thick fudge, the Basil-Lime special of the month is a revelation, etc. etc. etc.).

    Launched in 2002 in Paris by two friends, the the company now has some 60 locations worldwide, and growing.

    There are two locations in Manhattan (Eighth Avenue and Eighteenth Street in Chelsea and University Place in Greenwich Village), one in Boston on Newbury Street, and others to come (keep checking the website or the Facebook page for new locations).


    Want an Amorino Gelato in your home town? Franchises are available. All of the food is made by artisans in Italy and shipped to the U.S.


    The brand’s signature is the gelato “flower” (photo above), with petal-like scoops. You can have as many different flavors as you want, from the monthly selection of 23 flavors (gelato, sorbetto, frozen yogurt) plus a special of the month.

    Not in the mood for an ice cream cone? There are:

  • Ice cream cups, crêpes and waffles
  • Coffee and tea drinks, hot and cold
  • Shakes made with ice cream or sorbet shakes
  • Pastries, macarons and confectionery

    If you are traveling to an “Amorino city,” make it a destination. You won’t be disappointed, even if you have to wait in line.

    Or better yet, make your city an Amorino city!



    Don’t want a petal cone? Have a cup! Photo courtesy Amorino Gelato.




    TIP OF THE DAY: Make A Semifreddo

    It’s National Ice Cream Month, which we interpret to include all frozen desserts. There is no National Frozen Yogurt Month, No Sherbet/Sorbet Month.

    The history of frozen desserts dates back to 2000 B.C.E., when the Chinese used syrups to flavor snow. Fruit juices made fruit ices. Honey and aromatic spices expanded the menu of flavors. So, the first frozen dessert was more sorbet than ice cream. Here’s the history of ice cream.

    Since ice cream is one of our favorite foods, we created a glossary of the different types of ice cream 10 years ago. Today’s tip, straight from the glossary, is to make a semifreddo.

    You don’t need an ice cream machine to make semifreddo. As with granita, it is often made in a loaf pan, or even an ice cube tray.

  • You can use cake pans or a springform pan make a semifreddo “cake,” with a center filling of caramel or fudge sauce, curd or fruit preserves, fresh berries or other fruit, Nutella, nuts, whatever.
  • If you use a springform pan, you can rim the semifreddo with lady fingers; or cover the sides of the cake with cookie crumbs.
  • You can make two or three layers of different flavors.
  • You can make individual semifreddos in custard cups or other molds.
    In fact, anything you can do to create ice cream cake can be applied to a semifreddo.



    Make semifreddo in a loaf pan. Then slice it instead of scooping it. Photo courtesy

    Semifreddo is the word for “half cold” in Italian; frozen soufflé is the English term. Semifreddo may look like ice cream but it is more of a frozen mousse, created by combining equal parts of ice cream and whipped cream. It is frozen in a pan or other container, then sliced and served.

    Semifreddo is a special occasion or party dessert that you can prepare ahead of time. The elegant Strawberry-Pistachio Semifreddo recipe below is from Safest Choice Pasteurized Eggs.

    Since the recipe uses raw eggs, pasteurized eggs are a worry-free solution (here’s more about pasteurized eggs and the 12 popular foods where you should consider them to eliminate the Salmonella risk).



    Strawberries and Cream Semifreddo. Here’s the recipe from



    Prep time is 25 minutes; allow another 12 hours for freezing. You can make and freeze the semifreddo up to three days in advance.

    You can use a different fruit, replace the nuts, etc. (we just made a raspberry-chocolate chip semifreddo adapting this recipe, and replaced the vanilla extract with Chambord raspberry liqueur). You can also be trendy, as in this recipe for Chocolate Semifreddo with Chile-Chocolate Sauce.

    You can also garnish with nuts, sliced fruit, chocolate savings, crushed cookies or candies, and sauces: chocolate sauce, custard sauce, fruit sauce, whipped cream, etc. You can also top it with meringue, Baked Alaska-style.

    Check out the different types of dessert sauces in our Dessert Sauce Glossary.

    Ingredients For 18 Servings

  • 2 cups fresh strawberries
  • 1 cup sugar, divided
  • 2-1/4 cups whipping cream (heavy cream)
  • 5 pasteurized egg yolk(s)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup chopped, toasted pistachios
  • Garnishes as desired

    1. LINE a 9×5-inch loaf pan with plastic wrap, leaving a 2-inch overhang on all sides.

    2. PLACE the strawberries in a food processor or blender. Add 1/3 cup of the sugar; process until the berries are puréed and set aside.

    3. BEAT the cream and 1/3 cup of the sugar in large bowl with an electric mixer on high speed, just until stiff peaks form. Set aside.

    4. BEAT the egg yolks with the remaining 1/3 cup sugar in a separate large bowl, until pale yellow and tripled in volume. Add the vanilla. Fold the whipped cream into yolks. Stir in the pistachios.

    5. POUR half of the egg mixture into loaf pan. Top with half of the strawberry purée. Use a small spatula to swirl the purée into the egg mixture. Repeat with the remaining egg mixture and strawberry purée.

    6. SMOOTH the top with a spatula and cover with plastic wrap. Freeze until firm, about 12 hours. To serve, remove the plastic wrap and invert the semifreddo onto a clean cutting board. Cut into 1/2-inch thick slices. Garnish as desired and serve.



    RECIPE: Blueberry Sorbet

    July is National Ice Cream Month as well as National Blueberry Month. Why not combine both concepts and make blueberry ice cream?

    Or, lower in calories and lactose free, blueberry sorbet?

    You don’t need an ice cream maker to prepare this two-ingredient blueberry sorbet; just blueberries and apple juice concentrate.

    The recipe, from U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council, couldn’t be easier to make. While you can do it with fresh blueberries in season, it’s just as good with frozen blueberries, which are picked at their peak and flash-frozen.

    The icy and refreshing treat can be enjoyed plain or served with cake, cookies, pies or fruit salad; or turned into a sorbet cocktail or mocktail.


    Ingredients For 4 Cups/6 Servings

  • 4 cups fresh or thawed, frozen blueberries
  • 1 can (6 ounces) frozen apple juice concentrate
  • Optional garnish: fresh blueberries
  • Optional garnish: crème fraîche


    Two-ingredient blueberry sorbet. Photo courtesy Blueberry Council.



    1. COMBINE the blueberries and apple juice concentrate in the bowl of a food processor or blender. Whirl until liquefied and our into a 11 X 7-inch baking pan. Cover and freeze until firm around the edges, about 2 hours.

    2. BREAK the frozen mixture into pieces with a heavy spoon. Place the pieces into the food processor or blender and whirl until smooth but not completely melted.

    3. SPOON into a 9 X 5-inch loaf pan; cover and freeze until firm. Serve within three days.

    Find more recipes at



    TIP OF THE DAY: Uses For Day-Old Croissants


    Turn yesterday’s croissants into today’s ice
    cream sundae. Toast them first. Yummy!
    Photo courtesy California Cherry Board.


    We just came back from the bakery with a bag of warm, fragrant croissants for breakfast. We know we’ll have leftovers tomorrow—even when we use some of them tonight to make Croissant Ice Cream Sundaes. Here are our favorite uses for yesterday’s croissants:


    Sure, you can nuke them for 5 seconds in the microwave to refresh them, or toast them. Or, you could turn the croissants into something else entirely:

  • Almond croissants (halve lengthwise, fill with frangipane or almond paste and warm)
  • Breakfast sandwich, toasted with scrambled eggs
  • Bread pudding (too many recipes to count!)
  • Custard dessert (recipe)
  • French toast, pan-fried, baked or ice cream sundae (see photo)
  • Garlic bread (halve lengthwise, spread with garlic paste or garlic butter and warm)
  • Grilled cheese sandwich
  • Lunch: chicken salad, ham and cheese or whatever on a toasted or warmed croissant (slice before warming)
  • Soup thickener, an age-old trick (add bread to a food processor, top with some soup, blend and stir the blend into the pot of soup)
  • Stuffing
    Can’t Decide? Freeze The Croissants.

    Place the croissants on a baking sheet (not touching) and put in the freezer until just frozen. Then wrap each croissant individually in aluminum foil, place in a freezer bag (since they’re pre-frozen, they won’t crush) and return to the freezer.

    Heat and eat: Remove the foil and place the croissants on a baking sheet for 5 minutes in a 325°F oven. Or, reuse the foil to line the tray of a toaster oven. You can also microwave them.

    Here’s something out of the ordinary for National Ice Cream Month, incorporating cherry season.

    Croissant French Toast with Fresh Bing Cherry Sauce was originally developed by the California Cherry Board as a brunch item. Frankly, with the chocolate sauce and whipped cream, it is just too much for a brunch main course.

    So we added ice cream and turned it into a dessert—a riff on profiteroles, the ice cream-stuffed cream puff pastry, drizzled with chocolate sauce.



    Ingredients For 4 Servings

  • ½ cup orange marmalade
  • 2 cups pitted fresh cherries*
  • Four croissants
  • 3 eggs
  • ½ cup milk
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 pint ice cream (cherry, chocolate, strawberry, vanilla)
  • 2 cups fresh whipped cream (recipe)
  • ½ cup chocolate sauce
    *While the original recipe used bing cherries, buy whatever is the freshest and sweetest-tasting. Check out these cherry facts.



    Bing cherries. Photo courtesy Washington State Fruit Commission.



    1. HEAT the orange marmalade in small saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the cherries and cook for five minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from the heat.

    2. SLICE the croissants in half lengthwise, as if to make a sandwich.

    3. WHISK the eggs, milk and cream in a flat-bottomed baking dish. Lay the croissant halves in the egg mixture, flipping several times to absorb the liquid.

    4. ADD the butter to a griddle and heat it on medium flame. When the fat is hot, cook the croissant slices until golden brown on each side.

    5. PLACE bottom croissant slices on serving plates. Top with the ice cream and the cherry mixture.

    6. ADD the croissant tops, a dollop of whipped cream a drizzle of chocolate sauce.



    TIP OF THE DAY: Cookie Crumble Sundae


    Celebrate National Ice Cream Month with a
    cookie crumble sundae. Photo courtesy
    James Beard Foundation.


    July is National Ice Cream Month, an enticement to explore new ways to enjoy ice cream sundaes.

    There are ice cream sundaes with fudge or butterscotch sauce; sundaes atop brownies, blondies and pound cake; and the less common but fun fried ice cream sundaes.

    And there’s the ice cream cookie crumble, which crumbles the cookies as a base.

    It’s an opportunity to combine your favorite cookies and ice cream, with a drizzle of anything from dulce de leche to fruit coulis. We’ve put together a list of options below.

    The recipe in the photo is from Chef Todd Shoberg of Molina in Mill Valley, California. It was created for a fall dinner at the James Beard Foundation dinner. Chef Todd made the ice cream with Fernet—a bitter Italian herbal liqueur that is drunk as an after-dinner digestif (and, according to Wikipedia, is popular in the San Francisco Bay Area where Molina is located).

    His cookie crumble has a base of homemade gingerbread cookie crumbs topped and a syrup made by reducing Coca-Cola. The syrup and ice cream moisten the cookies in a most delightful way.


    Think beyond the obvious (chocolate or vanilla ice cream with fudge sauce over crumbled Oreos), and consider that you can:

  • Go childhood: Our favorite sundae was pistachio ice cream with hot fudge and mini almond biscotti. What was yours?
  • Go nouvelle: Combine modern ice cream flavors, like blood orange sorbet and deep chocolate cookies with a blackberry coulis; green tea ice cream with Chinese almond cookies and fresh raspberry sauce; espresso gelato with crumbled orange zest shortbread and dulce de leche sauce.
  • Go old-fashioned: Our Nana served vanilla ice cream with molasses clove cookies and butterscotch sauce.
  • Go seasonal: Pick flavors that represent the season—summer stone fruits, fall spices, Christmas peppermint, winter citrus, spring berries and herbs.
  • Go tropical: How about mango or passionfruit sorbet with coconut macadamia cookies?


    Pick Your Frozen Dessert

    Pick your flavor of:

  • Gelato
  • Frozen Yogurt
  • Ice Cream
  • Sorbet
    Pick A Complementary Cookie

    Some options:

  • Butter cookies/shortbread
  • Chocolate cookies, chocolate chip cookies, brownies
  • Fruit cookies: Fig Newtons, linzer, oatmeal raisin, thumbprints
  • Nut cookies: almond, amaretti, macadamia, pecan, pistachio, walnut, etc.
  • Spice cookies: clove, gingerbread/gingersnaps, molasses
  • More: anything from biscotti to meringues


    Vanilla ice cream, brownie crumbs and Baileys Irish Cream.


    Pick A Sauce

    For complexity, you can add a tablespoon of alcohol to any topping. Here are the different types of dessert sauces.

  • Buttery: butterscotch, caramel, dulce de leche, hard sauce, rum sauce/rum raisin sauce
  • Chocolate: fudge sauce or syrup
  • Cream: hand-whipped to flowing (not stiff peaks), flavored as you wish
  • Custard: crème anglaise, custard sauce, zabaglione
  • Fruit Coulis or Purée: coulis is an extra step to strain a fruit puree and remove the seeds
  • Liqueur: coffee, chocolate (like Godiva), cream (like Baileys), fruit liqueur.
  • Syrup: flavored syrups for coffee can be used here
    You can also let guests make their own sundaes, by setting up an ice cream buffet with cookies and toppings. Either way, a good time will be had by all.



    JULY 4th: Red, White & Blue Ice Pops

    Popsicle and other brands make red, white and blue ice pops. But we’re not in grade school, and we want something more flavorful (and natural!) on a hot summer day.

    So we trotted out our ice pop molds to make our own red, white and blue “firecracker” pops. The recipe is courtesy of Brown Eyed Baker, who adapted it from Everyday Food.

    The layers are made from strawberries (red), sweetened plain yogurt (white) and blueberries (blue). Very little sugar is added. Instead, a bit of lime juice heightens the flavors.

    Prep time is 2 hours. You can make them up to a week in advance.


    Ingredients For 6 Three-Ounce Pops
    For The Red Layer

  • 2 cups halved, hulled strawberries (or whole raspberries)
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1½ tablespoons fresh lime juice
    For The White Layer

  • ¾ cup full-fat plain yogurt
  • 4½ tablespoons heavy cream
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
    For The Blue Layer
  • 2 cups blueberries
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1½ tablespoons freah lime juice


    Delicious homemade red, white and blue ice pops. Photo courtesy



    Fresh fruit purée makes the best ice pops. Photo courtesy Williams-Sonoma.



    1. MAKE the red layer: In a blender, combine the strawberries, sugar and lime juice. Purée, scraping down the sides as needed. Pour through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl, pressing the juice from the solids; then discard the solids. Fill the ice-pop molds 1/3 of the way. Freeze until firm, about 30 minutes. You may have some purée leftover—use it as a topping the next time you have a container of yogurt.

    2. MAKE the white layer: Whisk together the yogurt, cream, sugar and lime juice in a small bowl. Remove the molds from the freezer and top with the yogurt mixture, filling each another 1/3 of the way. Freeze until firm, about 30 minutes.

    3. MAKE the blue layer: In a clean blender, purée the blueberries, sugar and lime juice, scraping down sides as needed. Pour through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl, pressing the juice from the solids; then discard the solids.

    4. REMOVE the molds from the freezer and insert the ice pop sticks through the white layer. Top with the blueberry purée (again, you may have some leftover), leaving ¼-inch of free space at the top of the molds. Freeze until solid, 3 hours or more. Just before serving, briefly run the molds under hot water to release the pops.



    JULY 4th: The Easiest Dessert Recipe

    Here’s the easiest July 4th dessert recipe: vanilla ice cream with blueberries and raspberries.

    Sure, you can find vanilla ice cream with blueberry and raspberry swirls and just scoop them into dishes. But with a recipe, the cook combines ingredients.

    To make the easiest red, white and blue dessert, you need:

  • Vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt
  • Blueberries
  • Raspberries
  • Optional: whipped cream
    You can substitute blackberries or strawberries, but blueberries and raspberries are a better size. If your market is sold out of fresh berries, head to the frozen foods case.



    The easiest red, white and blue dessert recipe. Photo courtesy Talenti Gelato.


    If you don’t want to scoop and serve individual dishes, place the ice cream in a serving bowl.

  • Scooping takes time, so just peel away the carton and plop the entire square or round contents into the bowl.
  • You can slice the bulk ice cream into halves or thirds to better fill out the bowl, and use whipped cream to fill empty spaces if you don’t like them.
  • Top with the berries and whipped cream, and let guests help themselves.
    That’s it!



    Another easy red, white & blue dessert. Photo courtesy Amanda Rettke.



    When you want to impress friends and family with a dessert that takes just minutes of prep, this is the one to prepare.

    Fresh berries are layered with mounds of whipped cream and angel food cake for a dessert that is be prepared ahead of time. It was created by Amanda Rettke from for McCormick, who used McCormick extracts in the recipe.

    The whipped cream—a special concoction of heavy cream, sour cream and orange extract—is a star. Once you taste it, you’ll want to use it on everything!

    Prep time is 25 minutes.

    Ingredients For 12 servings

  • 2 cups halved or sliced strawberries
  • 2 cups blueberries
  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 3/4 cup confectioner’s sugar, divided
  • 3 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1-1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon pure orange extract
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 4 cups angel food cake cubes
  • Preparation

    1. TOSS the berries, 1/4 cup of the sugar and 2 teaspoons of the vanilla in large bowl. Set aside.

    2. BEAT the cream, remaining 1/2 cup sugar, remaining 1 teaspoon vanilla and orange extract in large bowl with electric mixer until soft peaks form. Gently stir in the sour cream.

    3. LAYER 2 cups angel food cake cubes, and 1/2 each of the berry mixture and whipped cream mixture in 2-quart glass serving bowl. Repeat the layers.

    4. COVER and refrigerate at least 2 hours. Garnish with additional berries, if desired.



    JULY 4th: Ice Cream Cones


    Impress your friends and family with these Independence Day ice cream cones. Photo courtesy Amy Miller Designs.


    Who wouldn’t want to be Amy Miller’s friend?

    The designer, crafter and baker created the best-looking July 4th ice cream cones.

    Head to for the step-by-step showing how she did it.

    In brief, you need ice cream cones, vanilla candy melts in red, white and blue, and sprinkles. You can use either cake cones (shown in photo), sugar cones or their big brother, waffle cones.

    The toughest part is deciding what flavor of ice cream to scoop into your cones. Vanilla works best, but keep an eye out for cherry vanilla, strawberry or blueberry swirl.

    How much do you know about the different types of ice cream and frozen desserts?

    Check ‘em out in our Ice Cream Glossary.




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