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Monday, August 25, 2014

Cookbook Review: Paleo Ice Cream by Ben Hirshberg

Ben Hirshberg‘s Paleo Ice Cream is a dairy-free frozen treat lover’s dream.   The 75 recipes for ice cream, frozen custards, sorbets, bars, toppings, and more will meet and exceed sweet expectations.  These desserts stand out on their own merit and not just as a substitute. 

I love ice cream, but traditional ice cream does not love me.  It mocks me from the freezer case and outdoors when I hear the familiar jingle of the ice cream truck.  I gaze longingly into frozen custard shop windows, wishing and hoping they finally decide to offer dairy-free goodness.  I've picked up non-dairy concoctions from the grocer, but the price tag always hits my wallet harder than I'd like.  There are dairy-free frozen treat recipes out there, but some just don’t quite match the texture and flavor I look for.

Paleo, dairy-free, and ice cream are terms that don't seem to go together, but Ben Hirshberg believes they should.  Inspired by a treat served by his girlfriend, Hirshberg dove into the experimentation mode and came up with a delicious collection of frozen goodness.  Ulysses Press took notice of the e-book author and the result is a paperback (and also Nook and Kindle) collection of traditional and quirky recipes that will please Paleo, vegan, and standard diet palates. 

Paleo Ice Cream is a dairy-free frozen treat lover’s dream.   The 75 recipes for ice cream, frozen custards, sorbets, bars, toppings, and more will meet and exceed sweet expectations.  These desserts stand out on their own merit and not just as a substitute. 

As you can tell, I am just heartbroken about testing ice cream recipes.  Devastated.  I am glad I have a family of ice cream lovers who helped me fight through this dark period!

All of the favorites are here - Strawberry, Chocolate, Vanilla, Mocha Chip, Rum Raisin, Mint Chip, Butter Pecan, and more.  If you're feeling adventurous, give Olive Oil, Carrot Cake, Apple Pie, Goat Cheese, Oregano, Cheesecake, or Salted Caramel, my current favorite flavor combination, a whirl. While most of the ice cream recipes are dairy-free, they do contain eggs in a coconut milk base.  If you're like me and egg-free, there are recipes here for you.  Vegan recipes include several sorbets and a selection of cashew butter- or banana-based recipes. Take note, the banana-based options are along the lines of banana soft serve recipes making the rounds on healthy eating blogs.  And they also make fantastic shakes when that sort of craving hits.  I may or may not have had the Quick and Dirty Banana Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream (page 142) for breakfast.  The Cashew Strawberry Ice Cream (page 137) was delicious and resulted in zero leftovers. 

The Chocolate Shell (page 150) was perfection!  It was even better than the one found in grocery stores or in parlors.  And it is such an easy and inexpensive recipe.  I need to find good gluten-free cones so I can enjoy a dipped cone or two.  Picture a brownie sundae with a hard shell in place of hot fudge sauce.  Yes, I went there and it was delicious! 

Summer in my home is not complete without a watermelon or two.  Hirshberg's Watermelon Sorbet (page 113) is a lovely way to serve and preserve it when the cravings for melon subside.  The Blackberry (page 114), Lemon (page 112), and Mango Sorbet (page 115) recipes guarantee I won't buy a pint of sorbet again.  I'm going to play with the Ginger Sorbet recipe (page 116) and see if I can perfect a Dark and Stormy Sorbet.      

The only modifications I made to any of these recipes were the use of Agave Nectar in place of honey, Earth Balance Non-Dairy Butter instead of grass-fed butter, and egg substitute in the Brownies (page 154).  I know, these substitutions are not Paleo, but then again, I'm not a Paleo eater.  I used either an ice cream maker or my food processor for all of the recipes I tried and had equal success.  
Pick up a copy of Paleo Ice Cream for $14.99 suggested retail or less and get to cooking.  If you'd like to learn more on Hirshberg's take on nutrition, follow him on Twitter or check out his blog.  Subscribe to his newsletter and receive his e-book, A Simple Guide to Mindful and Intuitive Eating, for free.

Now please excuse me as I wander into the kitchen to whip up some more Quick and Dirty Banana Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream.  I need a snack while making dinner.  

Disclaimer: Sherrie Thompson has personally reviewed the product listed above. Sherrie has not received any monetary compensation for her review. Sherrie did receive a free product to try out so she could evaluate and use it for her review. Her thoughts & opinions in this review are unbiased & honest and your opinions may differ. Content on this blog is copyrighted, all rights reserved. We reserve the right to legally pursue anyone who violates our rights and/or steals our copyrighted material.

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