Life was changed forever when ice cream was invented. Have you landed a huge deal or just enjoyed a fabulous meal? A scoop of ice cream makes a great day… AWESOME! Have a horrible fight with your boyfriend or get a bad grade? Treat yourself to a big bowl of ice cream and world looks a hellava lot better. It rivals electricity. Ok, not really… but maybe… just a little.
Meet Cordell Kersey!
Last week Firefly Grill’s Event Coordinator, Katie Koester, introduced me to Cordell Kersey who’s in charge of their pastry creations. We had a great chat. Shy and unassuming, Cordell is charming and imaginative. He started working at the Firefly a little over a year ago. One of the things I really admire and respect about the owners and Chef, Kristie & Niall, is the way they promote from within their team.
Cordell started at the Firefly bussing tables and now is able to express his creativity with sugar confections. His favorites include crème brûlée and his new chocolate ice cream.
I am a sucker for Firefly’s ice cream. Mainly because they’re all made from scratch in house. No artificial-nothin’ going on here. No sir! The other thing I’m crazy about is all their wildly different ice cream flavors. Yes, they offer vanilla and chocolate, but there’s nothing ordinary about them or the other flavor combinations! Take Cordell’s chocolate ice cream for instance, (personally I think they should call it Chocolate Marshmallow) it’s a blend of dark chocolate, milk chocolate, and white chocolate and the result is GENIUS!! It really does taste like a smooth creamy milk chocolate marshmallow ice cream. Nom nom nom!
Some of their other popular and fun ice cream flavors have been: Butter Peanut, Pumpkin, Dreamcicle, Espresso, and Berry Lemonade. I couldn’t help myself. I had to throw my 2 cents into the ring and asked Cordell if he might be able to make a Strawberry Jalapeno ice cream. I had a Strawberry Jalapeno margarita last fall and all I could think of was… “oooh, this would make a great ice cream!” He gave me a decidedly unequivocally definite… Maybe. Seriously, though, he liked the idea and said he’d run it past Niall. Sweet!!! If that one doesn’t fly, maybe I can talk him into a Pineapple Basil sorbet. Hmmm???
Have I ever told you how much I LOVE being a food blogger? Well, I do. And never do I enjoy it more than when I get to do a tasting. Oh boy!!! Cordell treated me to an entire flight of ice cream: Berry Lemonade, Espresso, Vanilla, Chocolate, and Blackberry. Then when I thought surely this day can’t get any better, he brings out Firefly’s Brownie Sundae. Oh… My… Goodness!!!!
If you’ve never had their brownie sundae, stop. Stop right now and go get it. Take a friend or two because it’s huge and divine! It’s so good you won’t want to share, but you’ll like yourself better if you do. The brownie is extremely chocolatey but not too rich. It’s caky but the edges are slightly fudge-y. But what I liked most was the paper-thin crust that had a slight crispness to it. That went… Crreikt! when you tap the spoon on it. Then there’s a cloud of whip cream (not too sweet), then a BIG scoop of chocolate ice cream (but you can pick whichever ice cream you want… Katie suggests the Blackberry) and drizzled with chocolate and caramel sauce and THEN they add fresh berries. I could eat this every single day. Not joking.
Ice Cream Flavors you gotta try!
Here’s a list of 12 Outrageously Delicious Ice Cream Flavors and combinations to play around with if you want to make your own and the Firefly Grill’s recipe is below you can use as a base too.
- Ginger Orange
- Chocolate Bourbon
- Lucky Charms
- Salted Vanilla
- Black Pepper & Honey
- Pineapple Basil
- Strawberry Jalapeno
- Pumpkin Spice
- Lemon Mint
- Cardamon and Sweet Cream
- Cherry Almond
Cordell was happy to share any of their ice cream recipes. I chose the Vanilla Ice Cream recipe and the Berry Lemonade Sorbet recipe. The only thing I altered in these recipes are the quantity since Cordell makes them in batches of 22 quarts. So I just trimmed them down a smidge so they make about 1.5 quarts per recipe since I use a pretty generic 1.5 quart ice cream maker.
If you’re in the market for one, I really like mine. It’s a Cuisinart and you can get it on Amazon. Here’s a link if you want to check it out.
If you need a bigger one, this one looked pretty swanky.
I thought the vanilla ice cream recipe would be particularly helpful because a solid basic recipe is gold. A good foundation is hard to beat. Besides a tried and true vanilla ice cream recipe is a chameleon. Use the vanilla recipe to have fun with and then create your own favorite ice cream flavors!
In order to get that really awesome ice cream consistency and NOT a rock hard frozen delight that threatens to chip your teeth, you need an ice cream stabilizer. I suggest trying Avacream Ice Cream Stabilizer and Trimoline. Ice Cream Stabilizer helps give sugar a more elastic quality as it freezes and Trimoline is an inverted sugar and also helps ice cream keep it’s creamy texture. As much as I would LOOOOOVE to make 5 gallons of ice cream and sorbet every week and eat it all myself, it wouldn’t be prudent. So I found these two ingredients in small quantities (8 oz. & 20 oz.) for a reasonable price on Amazon, especially since such a small amount is called for in the recipes. But hey, if you want the 5 pound bag and the 14 pound tub… go for it! Then call me and I’ll be more than happy to help you eat all your ice cream! ????
Vanilla Ice Cream
Ice Cream Flavors that can’t be beat! Here’s a vanilla ice cream base recipe to play with so you can come up with all your own amazing flavor combinations. Super YUM! | www.lakesidetable.com
- Prep Time: 30 minutes
- Cook Time: 30 minutes
- Total Time: 1 hour
- Yield: 1.5 quarts
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Freezer
- Cuisine: American
- 10.9 oz. Heavy Whipping Cream (309g)
- 5.5 oz. 2% Milk (156)
- 4 oz. Sugar (113g)
- 1 Vanilla Bean
- .07 oz. Ice Cream Stabilizer (2g)
- 3 oz. Egg Yolks (85g)
- .7 oz. Trimoline* (20g)
- .07 oz. Fine Salt (2g)
1. Cut vanilla bean in 1/2 and scrape out the seeds.
2. Add vanilla bean husk and scraping to the milk, cream, and sugar.
3. Heat to 65C (or 149F)
4. Turn off heat and let cool. Then slowly stream yolks into liquid while whisking constantly.
5. Let mature overnight in the refrigerator.
6. Strain base with a fine strainer before spinning in ice cream machine.
7. Spin in ice cream machine until thick and creamy.
Both Ice Cream Stabilizer and Trimoline can be found on Amazon. Check out my post for links. Trimoline is a sweet sugar syrup that stabilizes and helps keep the ice cream from crystalizing. Ice Cream Stabilizer is a guar gum powder that also keeps ice cream smooth and creamy.
Special equipment needed: Ice Cream Maker, Kitchen Scale, Trimoline (invert sugar), & Ice Cream Stabilizer
Berry Lemonade Sorbet
- Prep Time: 30
- Cook Time: 45 minutes
- Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
- Yield: 1.5 quarts
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Freezer
- Cuisine: American
- 2.7 oz. Water (77g)
- 1.7 oz. Sugar (50g)
- .7 oz. Powdered Sugar (20g)
- .05 oz. Ice Cream Stabilizer (2g)*
- 2.4 oz. Raspberry Puree (68g)
- 5 oz. Sorbet Base (142g)
- 6 oz. Lemonade (170g)
- 2.4 oz. Strawberry Puree (68g)
1. In a sauce pan bring water to a boil
2. Put purees and lemonade in a plastic container and set aside
3. Combine sugars and sorbet stabilizer in a bowl and whisk thoroughly
4. Add dry ingredients to boiling water
5. Add everything to the plastic container
6. Mix well and let set for 4 hours.
7. Strain and spin in an ice cream maker until desired thickness.
*This can be found on Amazon. I’ve got a link to one that is inexpensive and easily available in larger cities and on Amazon.
Special equipment needed: Ice Cream Maker, Kitchen Scale & Ice Cream Stabilizer
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