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Cox: Frozen desserts receive a warm welcome

‘Frozen Desserts’

By Francisco J. Migoya and The Culinary Institute of America (Wiley, $60)

With warm weather just around the corner, it’s time to focus on exciting, innovative frozen desserts.

Francisco J. Migoya, an assistant professor in Baking and Pastry Arts at The Culinary Institute of America, has compiled one of the most comprehensive, essential collections devoted to the preparation and art of frozen desserts. Make no mistake about it, after spending a few minutes with this book, you’ll quickly realize that a frozen dessert isn’t necessarily just a bowl of ice cream.

Chef Migoya documents the history and evolution of frozen desserts along with serving up 200-plus recipes. Covering almost every aspect of frozen dessert production, personal guidelines that worked well for him are also featured. For example, believing that flavor is the most important aspect of desserts – with visual appeal a close second – Chef Migoya recommends using seasonal and the highest quality ingredients possible. And, he adds, even though simple, clean and polished desserts are sometimes difficult to achieve, they are generally the best.

The collection is divided into eight main chapters. In addition to a brief history of frozen desserts, there is an overview of the equipment, machines, tools, and ingredients required to make the perfect frozen dessert. Both dairy-based and nondairy desserts are also highlighted. One of the more intriguing sections is “Finished Items,” a chapter that instructs how to produce, plate, garnish, and serve small desserts, plated desserts, frozen cakes, and even frozen accompaniments to savory courses.

Aspiring pastry chefs and professionals in the industry aren’t the only ones who will find inspiration from this incredible cook. New cooks who want to explore what is possible in the family kitchen will also find the collection instructive and fun.

Some of the better recipes are a delicious Granny Smith Apple and Fennel Sorbet with Fennel Jam, an unusual Burnt Milk Gelato and a bracing Espresso-Cardamon Ice Cream.

I tested two recipes from Frozen Desserts. An abundance of lemons triggered me to prepare a Lemon Curd Ice Cream. It was fairly easy to make and is a close cousin to the frozen custard, a Midwest favorite. Since rum is a basic food group at my house, I also selected the Rum Ice Cream recipe.

Both were successful.

Tucsonan Larry Cox’s “Shelf Life” reviews of fiction and nonfiction books and his “Treasures and Trends” antiques column run Thursdays in Calendar Plus. For more, go to tucsoncitizen.com/calendar. E-mail: contactlarrycox@aol.com

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