Bourbon Brown Sugar Ice Cream (gluten-free)

Bourbon Brown Sugar Ice Cream  1 gluten-free

If I told you how good this ice cream was, you wouldn’t believe me. You’d probably think I was exaggerating, trying to build traffic by claiming to have found OMG THE BEST ICE CREAM EVARRRRRRR YOU GUYS.

So I’m not going to tell you all of that. I’m going to talk about how, even though this is gluten-free, it is not health food. Remember how I talk about balancing health and hedonism? I ate this for lunch the other day. Hedonism at its best.

The ratio for this frozen custard recipe — which, by the way, results in a thick, rich custard so good I considered not even putting it in my ice cream maker — is essentially three cups of a cream/milk mixture and six egg yolks. That’s right, just the yolks.

If you’re not ready for decadence, don’t make this recipe. The base itself, barely adapted from The New York Times, is velvety smooth, so rich that it makes you realize why sometimes people use orgasmic references when talking about food. I almost pulled a full-on Meg Ryan in my kitchen, no lie.

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Summer Corn Salad (meatless, gluten-free, vegan option)

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It’s summertime. We all know that all you want to eat is a giant bowl of vegetables, and those vegetables better not have touched a heat source at any point (apart from maybe a grill). They should be in season, full of flavor and taste basically like sunshine.

In other words, the standards are high. Luckily, I have just the salad for you.

Are you ready for a confession?

This was not going to be a blog post. Originally, this was something I just made with leftovers from the fridge. I had tomatoes. I had a microwaved ear of corn, half an avocado and basil. And, best of all, I had a brand-new ball of smoked mozzarella that I picked up for another recipe that I was suddenly to hot and tired to make.

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Curried Quinoa Salad with Roasted Red Pepper Hummus (vegan, gluten-free)

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You guys are about to be all, “Oy with the poodles already! Kate, what is the deal with the quinoa salads?”

Because, I mean, I do make a lot of quinoa salads. There’s my favorite one ever, then there’s the Greek one, the Sun Valley one and the power bowl. That’s a lot for a blog that hasn’t even been around for a year yet, and for a blog that was originally started to be Paleo. 

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Multi-green Pesto (gluten-free, paleo and vegan option)

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Pretty much all I want to eat these days is a giant bowl of salad with a slice of bread. It’s summertime, work is busy, and I’ve been forbidden from turning on the oven, so that’s also the simplest solution.

But I also want some interesting flavors, you know? Which is why this pesto is so enjoyable. Guess what? It doesn’t have basil in it, just a bunch of powerhouse greens and some yummy, nutty-tasting flax. There’s not much to say about it, except that it’s inspired by this recipe by Cookie and Kate and it’s perfect with anything — spread on bread, used with sort of a bruschetta, spread on pizza crust in lieu of sauce or simply thinned and tossed into pasta. Or zucchini! Your call.

As you  can see above, I went the simple route.

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Buttermilk Blueberry Crisp Ice Cream (gluten-free)

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I was trying to be good this week. I was all excited about turning over a new summer leaf, about eating vegetables and fruits and cutting back on dairy (well, a little) and forgetting that I ever let a slice of bread into my life.

And then I found this recipe. Guys, it’s buttermilk ice cream. You may be thinking that, actually, this sounds kind of gross, but that’s only because you haven’t tried it yet. Normal ice cream can be too sweet, cloying, making you wonder why you bothered with the ice cream instead of taking a spoon to a bag of white sugar. Because, you know, at least sugar is vegan.

You won’t ever have this problem with buttermilk ice cream. It’s velvety, creamy goodness with just a little punch of sour to cut the heaviness of the cream and to set off the lovely sweet-sour taste of fresh blueberries.

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Beet Salad with Pecans and Blue Cheese (meatless, gluten-free)

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You throw beets on anything, and you’re pretty much guaranteeing that I’m going to freaking love it. Love the color, love the flavor, love everything.

Which is why my new favorite salad at one local restaurant is the “Duelling Beets,” a plate full of fresh mixed greens topped with roasted beets of two colors, pecans, blue cheese and a balsamic vinaigrette. It’s stupid good, though I find it hard to justify going to this particular restaurant every night. Even if they do have the best coconut cake in the entire world.

Anyway, I became convinced that I could make this salad at home.

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Friday Favorites

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I promise, I have been cooking — even though it’s unbearably hot and even the thought of turning on the oven has become unthinkable. But I won’t post recipes unless I adapt them in some way, and what I have been cooking lately has been so perfect that I can’t change enough to make them worth posting on my own blog. Maybe in the future they’ll lead to inspiration, but this week, I’ve just been reaping the benefits of others’ ingenuity. It’s been awesome, and I want you to be able to enjoy it, too.

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Mixed Berry Ice Cream (vegan, gluten-free)

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A wildfire started about six miles from my home on Sunday, growing from half an acre to 700 acres overnight. The entire fire station was thrown into a frenzy as people arrived to help, with sirens wailing and cars parked everywhere. While some manned the station and made sure there was staff to respond to medical calls in the area if necessary, others went to help protect homes in the face of the rapidly growing fire.

While far better people than I were throwing on their wildland fire protection gear and making sure they had enough water, I was making ice cream. Wildfires drive me crazy because I used to cover them for the local newspaper. I had complete freedom and justification to call every public agency I could think of to discover what the fire was doing and what would come next; I was the one the Wood River Valley could rely on for that information. Now, I have to wait and read the newspaper like everyone else, even as my new husband could be literally standing next to a house on fire with a hose in his hand.

So, I make ice cream to keep from going crazy.

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Tangled Thai Salad (vegan, gluten-free, paleo option)

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After over a week of eating and drinking everything I laid hands on while celebrating our wedding, I’ve found myself in desperate need of vegetables.

And what a coincidence — it’s summer! Local produce is finally here, and I can bask in fresh herbs, kale and even good tomatoes. My garden took off with all of the rain we had last week, and the spinach is starting to get little round leaves while the carrots have finally poked their little green sprouts out of the soil.

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Superfood Summer Salad (gluten-free, meatless)

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I am really, really bad at themed food. The second I try to come up with something to fit a certain holiday or season, every idea I might have had flies straight out of my head. Then, I come up with tangential ideas that only kind of fit the theme and try to make them fit, usually with disastrous results.

But every once in a while, a recipe comes beautifully and gloriously together and happens to fit a perfectly appropriate theme. This salad is a perfect example. The recipe reads like I just threw every superfood at my disposal into a salad bowl and mixed thoroughly; the reality is that the flavors all meld deliciously together, complementing each other in complex and satisfying ways.

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