I used my ice cream maker twice in two days

So, even though I read Unclutterer and am therefore required by doctrine to hate large, rarely used counter-top appliances, I do own and love an enormous shiny stainless-steal beast of an Italian-made ice cream maker, the Musso Lussino 4080. Despite its enormous size, it only makes a quart-and-a-half of ice cream or so, but it does a good job, and, more importantly, has a built-in-freezer system. It’s a beautiful rock-solid machine and I love it, but I have to admit I don’t use it too often. So it was exciting to use it twice this weekend.

Saturday after my 11-mile run was the MiPL farmer’s market shopping and cooking event, which only seven people were still signed up for. It worked out well, though — it was still a crowded enough kitchen. I was on the dessert team, and it came out well:

dessert.jpg

The idea was to go for two desserts, a Blueberries Romanoff (blueberries with liqueur and mint, in whipped cream) and a Strawberry Sorbet. By the time we got around to buying them, the whole farmer’s market was out of blueberries, so we went with blackberries instead, and threw in some macerated slices of leftover strawberries too. Instead of Grand Marnier, I substituted reduced orange juice, which I also used as one of two sauces laid down on the plate: the other was a strawberry sauce made by cooking down the leftover sorbet base. I plated it with some miniature vanilla Bundt cakes I found at Trader Joe’s, and a sprinking of powdered sugar. The sorbet came out very nicely, and I got to use my ice cream machine! Everybody else’s dishes came out delicious too, and there was plenty of wine… it was a great party.

After that, for the next day and a half, I did almost nothing except clean up the house. Sweetie helped out enormously there, too, which was wonderful of her. We even got the family room downstairs clean, a project I’ve only been picking away at for four months now. This was all in preparation for the first MiPL event to be help at my place, an all-holidays pot luck. The concept was that everyone should bring a dish representative of a holiday which takes place during the month they were born. High-concept, right? I tend to have good ideas that don’t work out quite right: in this one’s case, I think nine of the first 10 items brought were pies. A few non-dessert items showed up eventually, and the pies were good, so I don’t think anyone was too unhappy. Me? I made frozen margaritas in the ice-cream maker. Mmmmmm.

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