Life on Regal-Hill: July 14, 2010

I love watching baseball on TV and look forward to seeing the 81st Annual All Star Game from Angel Stadium in Anaheim, California. The game was actually played last night (Tuesday), but I write this column earlier in the week. The roster for each team was expanded to 34 players for this year. Hall of Famers Rod Carew and Reggie Jackson were the Grand Marshalls for the opening ceremonies.

Some of my favorite American League players are Vernon Wells, Jose Bautista and Torii Hunter from the Angels; C.C. Sabathia, Phil Hughes, Mariano Rivera, Derek Jeter and Robinson Cano from the Yankees and John Lister and David Ortiz from the Red Sox.

Twins’ catcher Joe Mauer, Cardinal’s first baseman Albert Pujols, Mets’ shortstop Jose Reyes, Brewers’ outfielder Ryan Braun and Dodgers’ hitter Andre Ethier are some of my favorite players from the National League.

This was the first year for John Lester and Andre Ethier. Some players seem to get voted in many times and some seem to take awhile to get elected to play in the All-Star game.

The Home Run Derby is also fun to watch. With Tigers’ first baseman Miguel Cabrera, Yankees’ second baseman Robinson Cano, Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz, Blue Jays’ outfielder Vernon Wells, Brewers’ outfielder Cory Hart and Cardinals’ outfielder Matt Holiday among the participants it should be a blast to see.

During a heat wave there is nothing better to cool off with than a dish of ice cream, unless of course it is a swim in the pool

July is Ice Cream Month and the third Sunday of July is National Ice Cream Day. So let the ice cream eating begin. Try these recipes if you are inclined to make your own.

Strawberry-Rhubarb Ice Cream
2 cups fresh or frozen rhubarb
1-1/4 cups sugar, divided
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons strawberry gelatin powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup miniature marshmallows
1 cup whole milk
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
In a small saucepan bring the rhubarb, 1/2 cup sugar and water to a boil. Reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 10-12 minutes or until rhubarb is tender. Remove from the heat. Sprinkle gelatin and cinnamon over rhubarb mixture. Let stand for one minute. Stir until dissolved. Cool to room temperature. Stir in marshmallows.
In a large saucepan, heat the milk, salt and remaining sugar to 175 degrees. Remove from heat and stir in cream and vanilla. Refrigerate until chilled. Stir in rhubarb mixture. Proceed as per directions with ice cream machine.
Editor’s Note: If using frozen rhubarb, measure rhubarb while sill frozen, then thaw completely. Drain in a colander, but do not press liquid out.
Yield: 5 cups
Taste of Home June/July 2010

Cookie Dough Ice Cream
3/4 to 1 cup refrigerated chocolate chip cookie dough
2 cups chocolate graham cracker crumbs (about 26 squares)
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup butter, melted
Ice Cream:
2 cups half-and-half cream
1 cup sugar
2 cups heavy whipping cream
6 teaspoons vanilla extract
12 ounces cream cheese, softened and cubed
Punch off small pieces of the cookie dough; place on a greased baking sheet. Cover and freeze.
Meanwhile, for crust, in a bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs and sugar; stir in the butter. Press into a greased 15-in. x 10-in. baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 11-15 minutes or until set. Cool on a wire rack. Break into small pieces and set aside.
For ice cream, in a small saucepan, heat half-and-half cream to 175 degrees, stir in sugar until dissolved. Remove from the heat. Cool quickly by placing the pan in a bowl of ice water; stir for 2 minutes. Pour into a large bowl.
In a blender, combine the whipping cream, vanilla and cream cheese. Cover and process until smooth. Stir into half-and-half mixture. Cover and refrigerate for several hours or overnight.
Fill cylinder of ice cream freezer two-thirds full. Freeze according to manufacturer’s directions (mixture will be very soft). Refrigerate the remaining mixture until ready to freeze.
In a large bowl, layer a third of the ice cream, cookie dough pieces and crust mixture; repeat the layers twice. Swirl the ice cream. Freeze for 2-4 hours before serving.
Editor’s Note: For food safety reasons, use only commercially prepared cookie dough.
Yield: 2 quarts
2009 Taste of Home Annual Recipes