Monday, July 20, 2009

I always consider myself to be in fair health, psychologically speaking. Just enough angst to not be terribly lazy. High in empathy, yet not altogether unselfish. A bit stodgy around the edges but basically fairly unrepressed. I credit it to having had a pretty easy life with little in the way of trauma, all things considered.

And then I go on a binge and I realize: OCD is me.

To whit my current, um, frozen dessert obsession. I contemplated buying an ice cream freezer for weeks before I finally stopped in at the nearby hardware store at lunch late last month. For dinner with C. the fashion photographer, I was determined to make rhubarb ice cream from a few stray stalks sitting in the refrigerator that needed to be used up before we went to New York.

What I didn't reckon for was that the metal canister of the machine needed to sit in the freezer for 24 hours, rather than the six hours I had until dinner time. It ought to work anyway, I told myself. But when the manufacturer says 24 hours, it turns out they really do mean 24 hours. And so we had cold rhubarb soup for dessert - creamy and delicious, with a hint of cinnamon and a little tang of sour cream, but soup nonetheless.

An inauspicious beginning, I thought, but it turned out not to be so. When we arrived in New York several days later, not only did my brother have an ice cream freezer, properly frozen, but I was able to find sour cherries in Manhattan to make sour cherry sorbet.

Then there was the night I fixed the gingery chicken and scallion pancakes for everyone - all of us adults and kids alike sitting in my brother and sister-in-law's living room - and I made pink grapefruit sorbet for dessert, which seemed vaguely Thai-ish. (Is grapefruit and crab salad Thai, or Vietnamese?)

Now I was on a scallion pancake and frozen dessert craze. Scallion pancakes with spicy cold melon soup and soba noodles, with fresh ginger ice cream for dessert, then scallion pancakes with soba noodles, with green tea ice cream for dessert, both rather delicate but, I have to admit, delicious. Oh, and at some point in there, for our friends visiting from Norway, I managed to make white nectarine sorbet, which comes out pale pink it turns out, and is best served right away to get the maximum flavor, rather than freezing it longer to make it harder.

But the upshot, really, is that sometimes being OCD is a good thing, to be honest. No one is complaining yet, that's for sure.

So, what should the next flavor be?

The Swedish word for the day is glass, which means ice cream and shouldn't be confused with glas, which means glass, as in both the material and something you drink from.


Anonymous said...

You are not alone on rushing freezing the ice cream canister. The liquid inside defies should be as cold as it's going to get in 6 hours.

Aleta said...

I love homemade ice cream and David Lebovitz is the source of some great recipes...but what I really want to know more about is scallion pancakes. Are these the Chinese style flatbreads that require all the stuffing and rolling?

Jeff said...

This all sounds delish! As for your next flavour... When we were in Italy last summer, one of our friends had a cone of raspberry-rosemary gelato. He swears it was the best flavour sensation ever!

maryclaire said...

Try basil ice cream. With toasted pine nuts as a topping. It's kinda like pesto, kinda like dessert. Somewhat like heaven.

Oh, and, "hi."

Francis S. said...


Jane said...

Blackberry/cabernet sorbet? Not too much wine, though -- doesn't freeze.

Joy said...

There's a pomelo salad in Thai cuisine. I want an ice-cream maker too... let's split one!

Anonymous said...

Oh, yum!

taalschool spanje said...

Swedish is also a tough language to learn. Before it I was thinking about Spanish that it might be a tough language, but it's my mistake.

Bethsa said...

My comment it's not for this entry, it's for your blog, entirely. I've read some entries for a while... I'm not constant but every now and then I read something and love when I read the word. Thanks for share.. Beth.

Viaggio di studio Cork said...

Not a tough language but you think it tough. Better to show your dedication towards learning.

IELTS ireland said...

that always tastes better. It takes some time and energy to complete, but once it's done you will enjoy having it. :)

Mnemonician said...

Hello! I am Sha!
I want to learn Swedish.
What are the most basic and core information
that i must learn b4 i take on learning
I am MA English. I want to know if it
could as well help me learn Swedish or not?
I have heard Sweden is a most beautiful
coutry. I wonder how do they measure human
beaty. And to what extent can beauty accompany
you to keep you happy? Swedish is a hard or
easy language? What are its special
characters (of written kind thereof).
I dearly aspire for having a Swedish
"female" Language partner. Would it be possible
for me to get and yet more importantly to get
going with one?? Sweden has been pictured to
me as a Sw(eet)eden. How far is it true is
still to be seen. I know very scarcely about
the nature of the Swedish. Who (which caste,
faction, sect or ethnic group) of them are
morst friendly and true plus who of them are
the most original Swedish people? All these
questions teem up in my skull and pour out
of my tongue but so far unanswered. My
address is * artistically written * given

farhad (underscore) alishah (at) yahoo
(dot) com and my cell could be accessed
through these digits:PlusNineTwoThreeOneTwo
FiveZeroTwoZero EightEightEight.

I like people belonging to the age-group
of more than 29 years of age because younger
ones might (ever) think me outdated coz they
are more advanced in their thinking and
are the sons of yet a younger time (more
complicated thought less rewarding and fakely
overdecorated to show up as really useful
and loveable).

Sweden has special appeal for me also coz
it is one of the biggest donators of
humanitarian aid to the world which goes to
show the generocity and sypathety of the
nature of the residents of Sweden.

Sweden also has, as i have heard, free
education facility for foriegners. I also
plan to use my ability to speak Swedish in
getting help to further get my mphil or
phd from Sweden!! A good idea which
should not fail. I want to become a Swedish
expert in the long run as here is a
potential for Swedish Language translator
as people come here for translation of their
docs into Swedish as requirements of
Swedish visa (a shcengen visa indeed).

I want someone to help me see the real
pics of Sweden and its people and culture
as it would me let me peep deep into
the being of the area of the language I
am really after. Is Swedish written from
right to left or left to right and many
questions like this one have occupied my
mind these days. Is their any class
system in Sweden. And which variety of the
Swedish is the most common, advanced and
easily comprehensible and modern? I need
someone to passionately and with ease of
mind listen to my querries and answe me
so i could undrestand and appease my
thirst for Swedish.

One thing about which i am greatly
curious is the "naming each day system"
in Sweden. What is it? How does it work?
and y one day is named male and one
feale (if i hanen't misunderstood it ).
The Nobel prize is really a greatest
achievment of a really great man/woman
but I want to know if it is so much
a prize to be talked about for the
Swedes also or not? And how do they look
at it? Has any Swede also got it till

What is the Law of the country regarding
Marriage system? Can a foriegner
also get married in Sweden? and more
importantly can he take his bride out
of this country or not? What are the
basic conditions of the Swedish
marrige contract? All these questions
can also be answered by someone else but
perfection of satisfaction of answer
to these and other question will
really be gotten by my personal study
of facts about them in original text
of Swedish. And that is not possible
until and unless i learn the Swedish

For it i need a Swedish friend,
preferrably plus 29 and female would
be an accurate answer to my anxiety
about learning Swedish from a
sympath etic teacher and/or friend.


Nagpie said...

Being a huge fan of the obsessive making of ice-cream myself I can really recommend mango ice-cream, or blackberry chocolate chip. (Actually anything and everything with chocolate in it is just fine with me) If you feel daring, why not try something with a swedish twist to it, Lingon (Cowberry, or so my dictionary tells me... ) or Hjortron (Cloudberry - such a pretty name) flavoured ice-cream.

Good luck!