Easy & Delicious Summer Treats: Ice Cream, Popsicles, and Sorbet

It’s summer. So, it should be hot out (unless you live where we live, in which case it’s just been raining for two weeks straight). And what better way to cool down from the heat than to eat some delicious frozen desserts? 

“But it’s just so hot out and I don’t want to leave my air conditioned house!” Well, you don’t have to. We cover three super simple recipes that are infinitely customizable and should help to beat the summer heat (or the summer rain if you’re us). 

How to Make Ice Cream Without an Ice Cream Machine

There are multiple ways to make ice cream. Some require an ice cream machine, some don’t. And let’s face it. Who owns an ice cream machine? If you have one, fuck you. (Just kidding, we’re jealous.)

Okay, but let’s just say you don’t have an ice cream machine, because most normal people don’t have one. We recommend the two-ingredient method that only requires heavy cream and sweetened condensed milk (plus some vanilla extract and whatever flavourings you want). If you’re trying to control sugar and be healthy or something (you’re eating ice cream, it’s not supposed to be healthy) you can use the freeze and stir method with milk, sugar, and heavy cream. However, the freeze and stir method requires you to do just that — freeze and stir. This can be a time consuming process and if you’re like us, if you don’t set an alarm you’ll forget that you have to stir your ice cream. Woops.

Here are the ratios you’ll need for the simple method:

  • 2 cups heavy cream

  • 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk

  • ½ tsp vanilla extract

All you have to do is whip the cream until stiff peaks form, and then slowly mix in the condensed milk, vanilla, and flavourings. We recommend using an electric hand beater for this — it makes it a lot easier. Whipping cream by hand is doable, but if you’re lazy smart like us then use an electric mixer. Use the high setting to whip your cream and the low setting to incorporate the rest of the ingredients. 

Ice cream base + Reese’s peanut butter cups + peanut butter + chocolate syrup.

Ice cream base + Reese’s peanut butter cups + peanut butter + chocolate syrup.

Mediocre Tip: Chilling the bowl and beaters can make whipping the cream easier! 

After everything is combined, freeze for at least 6 hours. 

The final product.

The final product.

Ice cream flavour combination ideas:

  • Peanut butter and chocolate with mini Reese’s peanut butter cups

  • Rocky road — just add marshmallows, nuts of your choice, and chocolate

  • Vanilla bean (if you have money to shell out on it instead of the extract)

  • OREO!

Need more flavour inspiration? Check out these 38 Absolutely Dreamy Ice Cream Recipes by Epicurious.

Sorbet + Blender = Easy Mode

Sorbet is the fancy older brother to ice cream. If you want to impress someone with your knowledge of fine food and wine, order the sorbet for dessert. Everyone will look at you and go, “Oh damn, they just ordered some fancy french sounding dessert. They must be cultured.” See what we mean?

We chose to make pear sorbet, mostly because Trevor had the most mind-blowingly delicious pear sorbet at a restaurant in town and has been on a quest to recreate it. 

So how do you make pear sorbet? Well, you get 3-5 unripened pears, peel them, core them, and cut them into manageable chunks. Then you put them in a pot with about ⅓ cup of sugar, ¾ cup of apple juice, and 4-8 tsp of lemon juice (start with 4 and add more as you see fit). Then you put that on a stove, let the liquid come up to a boil, and simmer it for about 10 minutes.

pears1.jpg

After letting the concoction cool for a bit, put it in a blender or food processor and puree the bejesus out of it. Pour it into a container and let it chill in the freezer. Congrats, you’ve made a sorbet!

The neat thing about sorbet is that you can swap out the pears for almost any kind of fruit. Raspberries? Absolutely. Strawberries? Can do. Lemon? For sure. You get it? Each fruit is going to have a different natural sweetness and tartness so adjust the sugar, water or juice, and lemon juice to balance it to your taste.

Bonus Tip: We’re pretty sure that the pear sorbet that Trevor had at the restaurant had a little malic acid in it to add some extra tartness that lemons just can’t bring. We’ve never tried adding malic acid to anything, so we can’t be certain, but you may want to try it and see what happens. Go easy on it though, malic acid is strong.

As a final note, if you decide to go with a blender as opposed to a food processor, make sure that you use a powerful blender. We’re talking Ninja at minimum. You want the fruit fibers to be almost nonexistent. If you feel so inclined, you could also pass the mixture through a sieve before freezing to remove any unwanted bits. 

sorbet1.jpg

Popsicles: So Easy A Baby Could Make Them

So you’ve learned how to make ice cream and sorbet, but maybe you’re strapped for time and want to make something super simple. Well, if you don’t have popsicle molds you’re out of luck. Make some sorbet or ice cream. (We made it sound easy, right?) But if you do have some dusty popsicle molds hanging around, give them a good wash and choose your ingredients!

You can make some crazy fun popsicle combinations like:

  • Raspberry lemonade 

  • Blueberries and cream

  • Coconut lime 

  • Kiwi watermelon

If you want, you can Google popsicle recipes for more ideas, but we recommend experimenting with your popsicle creations! Recipes are a great guideline, but how sweet or tart you want your popsicles is ultimately up to you. Add sugar for sweetness, lemon or lime juice for tartness. Try coconut milk or yogurt instead of fruit juice. THERE ARE SO MANY POPSICLE POSSIBILITIES!

We recommend freezing your popsicles overnight to ensure that they are solid, but if you’re really desperate they might be done in 4-6 hours depending on how cold your freezer is.

popsicle1.jpg

We hope that this post has convinced you to give making homemade ice cream, sorbet, or popsicles a try. Hopefully these chilly treats help you cool down from the scorching summer heat. (Or if it’s raining, you can pretend it’s a sunny summer day. It’s been raining forever here in Edmonton — don’t know if we mentioned that yet.)