5 Ice cream shops to check out in Montreal this summer

5 Ice cream shops to check out in Montreal this summer

August is upon us, which means that there’s one more full month of summer to melt (pun intended) in all of the frozen treats your heart desires. That’s right folks, the time for ice cream indulgence is here. Here are 5 places to check out before the snow starts to fall again in Montreal. Dalla Rose 1

Dalla Rose 2

Dalla Rose

The new kid on the block, Dalla Rose recently opened down on Notre Dame in St. Henri (right next to Arthur’s, the modern Jewish deli that also recently took up shop). Try their ice cream offerings on their own, or sandwiched between a variety of homemade cookies (the only complaint here is that some of the cookies are a bit on the hard side, making the ice cream sandwich difficult to eat without squeezing out all of the actual ice cream – hopefully this is just the result of growing pains and they will work out the kinks). Flavours include tournesol (sunflower seed), which is especially good paired with vegan chocolate coconut.

Dalla Rose Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

La Diperie

La Diperie

Less about the ice cream and more about the bajillion different dips and toppings you get to chose to coat it, La Diperie brings out the kid in anyone who visits. Start with basic vanilla soft serve, and choose from at least a dozen varieties of melted chocolate to dip it in (salted chocolate and dulce de leche are both winners). Roll it in a mélange of toppings from crushed pretzels, to Oreo crumbs, and you are in for a treat.

La Diperie Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Kem Coba 1 Kem Coba 2

Kem CoBa

Kem CoBa has been a fan favourite on the Montreal ice cream scene for awhile now, so much so that there is even a Twitter account dedicated to monitoring the size of the line to get some (be prepared to line up around the block if it’s a scorcher out). It’s worth the wait though for their Asian-inspired flavours of ice cream and sorbet like pandan and chai. Don’t forget to try their homemade soft serve either, which is an ever-changing sorbet/ice cream combo, making for a refreshing, creamy treat.

Kem CoBa Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Pandan

Pandan Cremerie

Easily the most unique “ice cream” on the list, Pandan is one of only a handful of Thai rolled ice cream shops in the country. Given that all of their ice cream is frozen and rolled right before your eyes, it does take at least 4 to 5 minutes per customer, but time goes by quickly when you are watching the novelty of it all (honestly it’s worth it just to get a video of the process in action). Try the Vietnamese coffee ice cream topped with a drizzle of sweetened condensed milk.

Pandan Creamery Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Ripples

Ripples

Located on St. Laurent right across from the infamous smoked meat shop, Schwartz’s, Ripples may look like your typically old-timey ice cream shop, but it is anything but, as indicated by unique flavours like kulfi and pistachio (loaded with pieces of actual pistachio). It may not be the lightest option, but it is decadent, full-fat ice cream at its finest, ultra dense and super smooth.

Ripples Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Lagrima Vanilla Ice Milk

Vanilla Ice Milk

Vanilla Ice Milk

It’s been what, a month since I last posted about ice cream? Well that is 1 month too long in my books. I know I already made a recipe for vanilla bean ice cream but stay with me here, this is vanilla ice milk – totally different thing. It is healthier too. Are you listening now?

The vanilla ice milk recipe is based off of Mark Bittman’s cornstarch ice cream. I know cornstarch is not the first ingredient you think of when making frozen desserts but it acts to thicken the base instead of using eggs and making a custard. Not only does it eliminate the possibility of scrambled eggs, it is also ready in half the time. You don’t get any chalky, starchy taste either because by bringing everything to a boil it cooks it out. Plus the cornstarch helps prevent the ice milk from freezing solid, which is hard to do with homemade ice cream products.

I think this can also be attributed to the alcohol in the Lagrima vanilla I used. They are a little company based out of Seattle making wicked pure vanilla extract. Sometimes the simplest things are the hardest to get right but this stuff tastes as good as using a fresh vanilla bean. They even keep the bean in the bottle which is both functional and aesthetically pretty cute! For my first time trying Lagrima vanilla, I wanted to utilize it in a recipe that would allow its flavour to come through as the primary thing you taste, hence why I went for vanilla ice milk. The vanilla came through all right. As much as I love my chocolate, I always choose vanilla ice cream, or in this case, ice milk. Are you with me?

Lagrima Vanilla

Vanilla Ice Milk

Vanilla Ice Milk

Lagrima Vanilla

Lagrima Vanilla Ice Milk
 
A lighter version of ice cream made with Lagrima vanilla extract.
Author:
Serves: 1 quart
Ingredients
  • 3 cups milk (1%, 2% or whole)
  • 2 tbsp. cornstarch, mixed with 2 tbsp. water (a cornstarch slurry)
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • 2 tbsp. agave syrup
  • 1 tbsp. Lagrima vanilla extract
Instructions
  1. In a pot, heat the milk, sugar and agave. Once the sugar is dissolved, gradually whisk in the cornstarch slurry. Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring constantly. The cornstarch will thicken the mix slightly. After it boils, remove it from the heat. Pour it into a bowl and whisk in the vanilla. Chill thoroughly.
  2. When the ice milk base has chilled all the way through, churn in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturers instructions, about 25-30 minutes. It should be the consistency of soft serve. Put it into a container and freeze until solid, 1-2 hours. Enjoy!

Ice Cream Cake

 

Ice cream cake

Ice cream cake

Is it ironic that I am writing about ice cream cake when there is a full-on blizzard outside? What better time is there to eat ice cream than in the middle of winter? You just have to make sure you have a mug of tea or hot chocolate ready to go for afterwards.

This ice cream cake combines 3 of my favourite flavours, vanilla, chocolate and salted caramel. All of the ice cream is made from scratch but feel free to use good quality store-bought ice cream if you are in a time crunch (or don’t have an ice cream maker). The brownie base is derived from my go-to brownie recipe, also used in these pomegranate brownies. When you think about it, it’s not a very complex dessert. 3 layers, no sauce, no nothing. But that makes it crucial that you use quality ingredients in each and every layer. I think that is a common theme in all of my recipes; never use crappy ingredients. But especially when dealing with ice cream cake. Ice cream demands respect people. And I cannot think of a better way of showing that than by putting it in an ice cream cake.

Ice cream cake

Ice cream cake

Ice Cream Cake

Ingredients

60g dark chocolate (70% or more)
2.5 tbsp. butter
1 egg
1/3 cup white sugar
pinch of salt
2.5 tbsp flour
salted caramel ice cream
vanilla bean ice cream

Instructions

To make the brownies, heat your oven to 325F and line a loaf pan with parchment paper.

Melt together the butter and chocolate. In a separate bowl, whisk together the sugar, egg and salt. Then whisk this into the melted butter/chocolate example. Finally whisk in the flour. 

Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Bake at 325F for 15 to 20 minutes or until set around the edges and still slightly tacky looking in the middle. Cool completely.

When the brownie base has cooled, layer on either the salted caramel or vanilla bean ice cream. Freeze it for 20-30 minutes before layering on the next portion of ice cream.

Cover with plastic wrap and freeze until solid, at least 2 hours. Slice and serve immediately.

Ice cream cake

Ice cream cake

Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

vanilla bean ice cream
Oh hi guys. I guess I kind of dropped off the face of the planet there for a bit. Well 3 days, but it sure feels like longer. In that time I honestly did not touch anything related to blogging. No new posts, no Facebook updates, no scouring the interweb or communicating with other food bloggers. I could attribute this to the busy start of a new semester but that is not the truth. In the past I have always found time for this site, no matter what other things are going on at school or otherwise. The break had more to do with the feelings I have been having towards blogging lately. As you may or may not know, I don’t make any money from this site. It is purely a hobby, but over the past little while it has started to feel more like a chore. I set up these expectations for myself that I had to blog regularly, at least 3 times a week, to ensure I was creating new and relevant content to expand my readership. Progress did not really occur as quickly as I would have liked and putting 20 hours a week into this thing for fun was not so fun anymore. Burned out isn’t the right word to describe it, more like a combination of frustration and anger sums it up better. Maybe my expectations were too high and I should have lowered the bar. Then I got thinking about what I really want to get out of this whole shebang. Yes, I would like to increase traffic. Yes, I would eventually like to make some money from it if I am doing it anyways. But do I actually want a career food blogging? Not really. If some sort of unforeseen opportunity came up I would definitely consider it, but otherwise I have a career plan in process and it is one that I really enjoy. So why am I getting so stressed out about this blog?
It’s probably the competitiveness in me that says I can’t do anything without diving headfirst into it and not looking back. I don’t want to write a blog that no one reads. I don’t need to be the next Joy the Baker but I would be lying if I didn’t admit that I want some recognition. Despite my efforts, right now I feel as though I have not really accomplished much. And those feelings make it really difficult to commit myself to this when I know that it isn’t going to effect my livelihood in the long run.
Where do we go from here, or more specifically, where do I go from here? I have put far too much work and effort into this to throw in the towel, I know that much for sure. At the same time, I know the focus has to be on creating something that I enjoy and obsessing less about readers and followers. Which is hard because it is a blog, not a diary. I am giving serious thought to switching over to WordPress though. I have used it at work and I definitely think it is the next step in bettering this site. Who knows? I could get to it this afternoon or continue to put it off for the time being. Decisions, decisions.
That’s where I am at right now. As for a recipe, today I have more ice cream coming your way. We are well on our way to assembling all of the components into a homemade ice cream cake. Have a great weekend everyone!
vanilla bean ice cream
vanilla bean ice cream
vanilla bean ice cream

Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
Adapted from David Lebovitz

Ingredients

1 cup milk
1 vanilla bean, split in half and seeds scraped out
3/4 cup white sugar
pinch salt
5 egg yolks
2 cups whipping cream

Instructions

1. In a saucepan over medium heat, warm the milk, vanilla, sugar and salt. Allow it to steep for at least 15 minutes.
2. Meanwhile pour the whipping cream into a bowl and place this bowl in a sink filled with ice water. Put a fine mesh sieve on top of the bowl so you are all ready to strain your custard when the time comes.
3. Place the egg yolks in another bowl. Reheat the milk and gradually whisk it into the eggs to temper them. Pour everything back into the pot and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon.
4. Pour to custard through the sieve, into the whipping cream. Stir to help it chill off (you want to do this as quickly as possible so that the eggs do not overcook).
5. Cover and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, at least 2 hours.
6. Once chilled through, churn the custard in an ice cream maker for 20-25 minutes, or until it reaches the consistency of soft serve. Freeze and enjoy!

vanilla bean ice cream
vanilla bean ice cream
vanilla bean ice cream
vanilla bean ice cream
Salted Caramel Ice Cream

Salted Caramel Ice Cream

salted caramel ice cream
It’s already time for the first Canadian Food Experience Project challenge of 2014. How did that happen? This month the topic is “A Canadian Resolution.” Frankly I am having a bit of a problem with this one. I don’t make resolutions. I think there are plenty of stats to show that they don’t exactly work and I don’t see the point of deciding to overhaul your life once a year. I’m all about making changes as you go, rather than waiting until it all reaches a breaking point.
Not to mention it would be virtually impossible to make a food related resolution come January in my family. My dad, mom and sister all have birthdays. Three birthdays means that I have to get creative with celebratory desserts – cake gets pretty monotonous – but it’s not the time for cutting out sugar, that’s for sure.
Today is my dad’s birthday, the first in the que. I made an ice cream cake, because, well, he likes ice cream. Because it has a few different components, I decided to split up the two ice cream recipes, plus the cake as a whole, into 3 separate posts. To begin we are going with the salted caramel ice cream. Not vanilla ice cream swirled with caramel, straight up caramel flavoured ice cream. That’s right, salted caramel ice cream. It’s a pretty good birthday dessert all on its own. The sweet and salty complexity comes from almost, but not quite, burning the caramel. It is a fine line between that rich, creme brûlée taste and burnt bitterness. But by making a super dark caramel and adding salt it really cuts the sweetness. Don’t get me wrong, it’s sweet just like ice cream should be, but it won’t make your teeth full out.
Happy birthday Dad, my favourite ice cream eating companion! What’s even better is that you are also one of my gym-going companions, so we don’t even need to make resolutions! I think that’s a balance we can all live with.
salted caramel ice cream
salted caramel ice cream
salted caramel ice cream

Salted Caramel Ice Cream
Adapted from David Lebovitz

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups white sugar
1/4 cup butter
3/4 tsp. fine salt
1 cup whipping cream
2 cups milk, divided
5 egg yolks

Instructions

1. In a large saucepan combine the sugar with a splash of water. Cook over high heat until it becomes a rich, caramel colour, swirling occasionally to help it along.

2. Once golden, remove the caramelized sugar from the heat and whisk in the butter and the salt. After they are both incorporated, whisk in the whipping cream. The sugar will probably seize up – don’t worry about it. Return the pan to the heat, stirring to dissolve the hardened sugar.

3. When the caramel is smooth, whisk in 1 cup of milk. Set it aside on low heat while you prepare the ingredients for the final steps of making the custard.

4. Fill your sink up with ice and water. Put the remaining 1 cup of milk in a bowl and set it in your ice bath, fit with a fine mesh sieve on top.

5. In another bowl, whisk up your egg yolks. Take your hot caramel mixture and gradually pour it into the eggs, whisking constantly to temper them. Pour everything back into the pot. Cook over medium low heat stirring constantly until it thickens to the point where it will coat the back of a spoon.

6. Immediately remove the caramel custard from the heat and pour it through the sieve into the chilled milk. Stir it around in the ice bath to cool it as quickly as possible. Once it reaches about room temperature, cover it with plastic and refrigerate until chilled, at least 2 hours.

7. Once chilled, churn in an ice cream machine for about 20-25 minutes or until the consistency of soft serve. Freeze and enjoy.

salted caramel ice cream
salted caramel ice cream
salted caramel ice cream