on April 2, 2012
"The New Scoop" by Alina Niemi is, quite honestly, the most amazing vegan ice cream book I've ever read!
After making my own vegan ice cream at home - very successfully and deliciously - for the last half-dozen years or so, I didn't expect to learn all that much by reading another set of vegan ice cream recipes. I was most pleasantly shocked by what "The New Scoop" had to offer me.
All of the basic yummy ice cream flavors are found in this book, along with many exotic and even bizarre-sounding flavors. There are many different "base" ingredients from which to choose. Some use tofu as a base, while others use coconut milk, soy milk, other vegan milk, soy yogurt, fruit, or fruit juice. I've tried a bunch of different recipes from this book, and they've all been EXCELLENT.
The most unusual ice cream I've made so far is beet ice cream. It sounded so weird that I just had to try it! Certainly, this flavor would never have occurred to me in a million years. I shared the beet ice cream with my sons (8 and 4 years old) and my parents. My sons LOVED it! Do note that if I had attempted to place beets in front of them at the dinner table, a full-blown riot might have ensued. Instead, my boys delighted in the bright pink color and sweet-with-earthy-undertone flavor of their dessert. As for the adult testers, we all agreed that it was perfectly pleasant and we would be happy to have it again, but it would never rival a flavor like mint chocolate chip. Clearly, though, it is a GREAT way to sneak some extra veggies into the diet!
In addition to presenting some terrific new ice cream recipes, "The New Scoop" also gave me several easy techniques that have substantially improved the quality of my ice cream. Suffice to say that I will NEVER add chocolate chips the same old way again!
"The New Scoop" is packed not only with numerous ice cream flavors, but sherbet, sorbet, and frozen yogurt recipes as well - all 100% vegan! There is an extensive introductory section that thoroughly explains the differences between these various kinds of frozen desserts, as well as information on what is involved in preparing a delicious batch.
While the book provides numerous excellent recipes, tweaking the recipes to suit your own personal tastes or dietary needs is actively encouraged. Want it sweeter? Add more sugar or agave nectar. Allergic to soy milk? Use rice milk instead. As the author states, "You are the boss of your ice cream!"
"The New Scoop" gives its readers plenty of information, along with an incredible variety of vegan ice cream flavors. I am very grateful to have received this book as a gift, or I might never have discovered how much more there was to learn in the world of homemade vegan ice cream!
on December 17, 2011
If, like me, you can't tolerate dairy and find yourself looking longingly at the variety of ice creams in the supermarket freezer, start smiling! Alina Niemi has come to our rescue with The New Scoop! But it's not just for vegans--the creamy smoothness and immense variety of these recipes open a whole new taste world for everyone!
Now we can go well beyond the grocery store options to make a different non-dairy dessert every week for two years--and still not have tried all the recipes in this book! Starting with 17 "Old Traditionals" (but extending the term a bit to include Apple-Maple-Walnut and even Peanut-Butter-and-Jelly flavors), the book continues into uncharted territory, with 35 recipes for ice creams or sorbets with unusual ingredients or combinations of ingredients. How about Carrot-Apple-Coconut-Curry or Beet-Basalmic Ice Cream, or Lemongrass-Ginger-Mint Sorbet? I've tried a few of these, and even when the ingredients sound strange, the results are delicious! Then there are 15 Frozen Yogurt desserts with such goodies as Raspberry-Chocolate-Chip or Pomegranate-Blackberry-Mint Frozen Yogurt. But wait--she's not done yet! There are 40 more recipes (yes 40!) in the Asian and Tropical Tastes category--everything from Guava Sherbet to Okinawan-Sweet-Potato-Ice Cream.
Though The New Scoop has pictures, I wish they had been in color. A strength of the book is the discussion of ingredients--the characteristics of different milk alternatives and sweeteners, and the roles of other ingredients, as well as telling you how to freeze fruit, toast nuts, and get the ice cream out of the freezer when it's stuck!
I strongly recommend The New Scoop for everyone who loves ice cream--and culinary adventures!