July 19, 2009

Á La Mode e-cookbook review

© 2009 Andrea's easy vegan cooking
In my greedy little hands I have a copy of Hannah Kaminsky's newest ebook, "Á La Mode: Vegan Desserts That Will Keep You Churning All Year Round." This little gem, sent to me for review by Alisa Fleming, author of "Go Dairy Free," contains a selection of beguiling recipes for very unusual ice cream treats. These are not high-speed versions of cool confections, but require a bit of time and patience in exchange for highly unusual and scrumptious frozen delights. I was magnetically attracted to Birthday Cake Ice Cream, Buttered Popcorn Ice Cream and Chai Latte Ice Cream, but settled on the homey-sounding Oatmeal Raisin Cookie Ice Cream, because I just happened to have all the ingredients on hand, and who could refuse an oatmeal raisin cookie?

© 2009 Andrea's easy vegan cooking
Hannah gives us permission to tweak the recipes, and I did tweak a little to suit my lazy-cook ways. For example, after I ground the oats in the food processor, I went ahead and emulsified the rest of the ingredients (except the raisins, of course) in the processor rather than whisking in the pot. I didn't pre-melt the margarine (sorry, Hannah) and I added an extra cup of soymilk and an extra teaspoon of vanilla. I also added some chocolate chips just before the ice cream was finished freezing because I like my oatmeal cookies with said chips.

So how did it turn out? Well, if you like oatmeal cookies and you like ice cream, you will love this. I agree with Hannah that it would go well in an ice cream sandwich, but really, it sparkles all by itself. It's luxuriantly rich and creamy (even after spending time in the freezer) as well as pleasantly crunchy from the praline and chips. If you like to experiment with unusual and intensely flavored ice cream - anyone for Peanut Butter Bomb Shell? - you should buy this book. It's gorgeously illustrated with Hannah's photos, and a bargain at only $5. Available here. There are provisions in the recipes for non-soy and gluten-free ingredients.

Notes for this recipe:
1. Although I ground the oats as fine as I possibly could, when I took the chilled mix from the fridge, it resembled tapioca, a mass of teeny bumps. Plus, it had a thick skin. (Was it from one of my shortcuts?) I put it back into the food processor and blended it until it was perfectly creamy, figuring that it couldn't hurt to buzz in as much air as possible anyway. The only problem with doing this was the raisins got puréed along with everything else.
2. I don't own a microwave so I cooked the syrup for the praline on the stove and it worked out fine. To save myself from cleaning two sticky containers instead of one, I added the toasted oats to the syrup instead of vice versa as in the recipe.
3. Here's a David Lebovitz post about how to make ice cream without an ice cream maker.
4. I was so anxious to eat my ice cream that I just couldn't wait for it to firm up in the freezer, hence its less than photogenic shape in the photo. Really, you should let it firm up a bit, but it's just so good that it's hard to be patient!
© 2009 Andrea's easy vegan cooking

13 comments:

  1. That ice cream sounds delicious! Do you need an ice cream maker for the recipes? I would love to make vegan ice cream, but can't afford an ice cream maker right now...

    Courtney

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  2. Courtney,
    I just added a link in the post to a David Lebovitz post about how to make ice cream without an ice cream maker. But, do you ever go to garage sales or second hand stores? I got an ice cream maker for myself and one for a friend at garage sales (different sales, different years) for $5 each. Lots of people get them as gifts and never use them. Mine is a hand crank kind with a canister I keep in the freezer so it's always ready. I have a post about ice cream makers on this blog.

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  3. Andrea - this looks great. I've had no luck with vegan ice cream. It always comes out too soft so I stick it in the freezer, and then it ends up being too icy. Any suggestions? I'm game for trying again:).

    ~Ellen
    www.Iamglutenfree.blogspot.com

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  4. I am so glad I ordered this ebook! I love Hannah's recipes and I hope I have time to make something from this fantastic pdf soon.

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  5. Ellen,
    This one worked great! Also, I've got a recipe for ice cream made with cashews, frozen mango, banana and chocolate chips that was amazing. Don't give up!

    Mihl,
    My next one will either be Birthday cake ice cream or Chai Latte. Probably Chai Latte since I won't have to make cupcakes first. (The birthday cake ice cream has actual cake in it!)

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  6. one of my best friends is a recent vegan and she is having the hardest time finding an ice-cream recipe since it's been so hot out!

    I'm going to tell her about this!
    thanks!!~~~

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  7. Five...,
    Tell her to make my cashew-mango-banana-chocolate chip ice cream. It's super simple and turns out great.

    (This ice cream turned out great, too but is a little more time consuming.)

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  8. Ooooh. So up my alley.
    Love oatmeal cookies. Looks like a great book!

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  9. sounds really interesting. popcorn, especially. the way you scooped it into the bowl in the top pic sort of looks like cookies, well very wet cookies.

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  10. Yes, I see what you mean about the "cookie look." I wanted to take a picture while there was still natural light so I didn't give the ice cream enough time to firm up. It really wasn't wet at all - very creamy and delicious.

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  11. Oh, yes I did, Alisa. Can't wait to try more flavors.

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  12. Thank you so much for your honest thoughts! I hope that you enjoy the remaining recipes just as much, if not more. :)

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