Up until now, we haven’t really discussed what makes a quality ice cream in the marketplace. There are obviously many factors that play into an ice creams’ overall quality, but as far as Federal standards are concerned we are talking about the amount of milkfat in the ice cream, and the amount of overrun. Overrun is the volume of air that is incorporated into the ice cream, and Federal standards allow for as little as 10% milkfat and as much as 100% overrun, meaning half of your ice cream is ice cream and the other half is air. This is standard practice for many commercial ice creams in our stores and why we see such a huge discrepancy in prices. There are differing designations for qualities, with the highest being “super premium”, which means milkfat content is somewhere between 14-16% and overrun is 25% or less. Super premium is where our product resides and always will. If there was an Ultra super premium designation, we would be in it, because our ice cream has high milkfat content and overrun of less than 25%. Next time you’re at the store, pick up a few differently priced pints and notice that some are heavier than others. When it comes to ice cream, typically the heavier the pint, the higher the quality. With our low overrun ice cream comes a texture difference as well. It is rich, creamy and more dense, which means it takes longer to breakdown in your mouth. And that’s good because you have longer to savor the flavor. So why are we bringing up this topic of quality now? Well, partly because we go to great lengths, (including controlling the pasteurization process) to make the highest quality ice cream possible. Second, as a consumer, the more you know the better right? Third, and most importantly, this weeks flavor is the epitome of quality in terms of low overrun. So lets get started…
This is peanut buttery goodness, and it was ground fresh from whole peanuts over at the Seward Coop just hours before hitting the creams. I mean, how cool is it to step up to a machine that is full of peanuts, press a button, and out squirts beautiful peanut butter? Maybe not that cool if you have a peanut allergy, but hey, it’s just a fantastic thing for peanut butter lovers. That’s us. The peanut butter gets whisked into the cream while we heat it up along with…
Coconut! As we do with our Seven Layer Bar ice cream, we toast the coconut before steeping it in our cream, which really intensifies the coconut flavors and infuses it into our base.
Mmmmmm, coconut milk. What would a curry be without coconut milk? Have you ever seen this brand before? You can get this and about five other brands you’ve never seen before over at United Noodles in Minneapolis. Please go there. If not for the largest selection of Asian grocery items from 15 different counties, then at least check out their new Deli(Unideli) for lunch. Either way, you won’t be disappointed.
The coconut milk gets added into the cream with the peanut butter and toasted coconut.
Ok, so this is where it gets interesting. When we order Thai food, we generally hit up True Thai. In our opinions, it’s some of the best Thai food Minneapolis has to offer, and it’s one of our neighborhood faves. This weeks flavor draws all inspiration from True Thai’s Rama Spinach Curry with Roasted Peanuts dish,
which incorporates a red curry paste, like this one, with peanuts and coconut milk. It’s served with rice, steamed spinach and bean sprouts. Fantastic! The idea just seemed like it would work in ice cream.
This particular red curry paste is made with chilies, lemongrass, shallots, kafir lime, galangal and spices (coriander, cumin, and cardamom). We stir it in with all the others during heating/steeping.
After our base is heated and all ingredients are steeped, we strain it through a fine mesh strainer to achieve an ultra smooth base ready for the churn.
Peanut Butter and Spicy Coconut Curry ice cream. The viscosity of the peanut butter gave our ice cream makers a workout and by the end of the churn appeared to have virtually 0% overrun, making for uber richness. This weeks pints really do out weigh the competition!
As we do every week, we’ll be giving away two pints of this flavor. Just leave a comment on our facebook page to be entered into the drawing. If you don’t have a facebook account, leave a comment right here on the blog. We’ll draw two winners on Friday afternoon (6/8/2012) at 4pm and will announce them on our facebook page (or email you if you’re comment resides here). Our only conditions are you must be able to pick it up here in Minneapolis, and be willing to give us a little feedback that can be shared with everyone else. Good luck!