10 August 2007
August Ice Cream Challenge
President Reagan declared July America’s national ice cream month, and while I lick my share of cones every summer, I don’t really hit my ice cream stride until August. August, when the heat settles over us in an unrelenting glare and we retreat to the beach in search of respite, clinging to those last days of vacation before we return to school and work, August is truly the month for ice cream.
I’ve been thinking about this recently, how everyone in so many cultures knows that late summer afternoon, when it’s too hot to work or even to play, when all you can do is stroll languorously and lap up a bit of cool creamy custard. I’ve also been thinking about my own love of ice cream and my rediscovery of homemade ice cream, and inventing new ice cream flavors, and I thought, why not? Why not churn up a bunch of different ice creams in August, just for fun. I could post them here on the blog, and if you’re not French and don’t get most of the month off, if you’re trapped in a cubicle, sweating as you run to work in your suit, you can tune in everyday and check out a new ice cream flavor.
So I’m announcing my own August Ice Cream Challenge, in which I’ll be posting a new ice cream recipe here every day for the rest of the month. Three weeks, 21 days of ice cream. It’s absolutely crazy, I know, but I think it will also be pretty fun. I’ve been doing some prep work ahead of time, and I’ve got some classic and some unusual flavors planned. If you have your own blog, I invite you to play along and post an ice cream of your own, or simply share your favorite ice cream experience in the comments section. If you’re looking for inspiration, I highly recommend David Lebovitz’s The Perfect Scoop, Bruce Weinstein’s The Ultimate Ice Cream Book, and Ice Cream Ireland. Claudia Flemming, Emily Lucchetti, and Nigella Lawson have also provided inspiration on my own recipe hunt.
Will she do it? What kind of wacky flavors will she come up with? Will she fit into her pants at the end of it?! I urge you to stay tuned and find out!
P.S. If you’re wondering where my crazy love of ice cream comes from, read this. I use an inexpensive ($50) ice cream machine with a bowl I store in the freezer. And in the interest of full disclosure, I’ve made some of the ice creams ahead of time over the past few weeks so that I could get a head start on posting them, and let me tell you we’re in for a fun ride.