Humphrey Slocombe Ice Cream Book Paperback – Apr 11 2012
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"Godby has drawn a loyal following from the start. His ice cream addresses two major grievances in the contemporary culinary scene: boredom with menus that all look the same, and irritation with the orthodoxy governing how we're all supposed to eat." - from Elizabeth Weil, The New York Times Magazine
About the Author
Jake Godby is chef and owner of Humphry Slocombe. He lives in San Francisco.
Sean Vahey is operations manager and owner of Humphry Slocombe. He lives in San Francisco.
Paolo Lucchesi is columnist of Inside Scoop for the San Francisco Chronicle . He lives in San Francisco.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
That said I've enjoyed all of the recipes I've tried. Lots of fun off-the-wall flavors.
Sadly, the Humphry Slocombe Ice Cream Book is one of these cookbooks.
I'm a fan of the establishment. I've eaten their delicious ice cream a dozen times, including a flight of beer ice creams during SF beer week. If this was a review of the *place* I'd give them five stars easily. But it's not.
So far I have made the Here's Your Damn Strawberry Ice Cream (twice), the Here's Your Damn Chocolate Ice Cream, Secret Breakfast, the cornflake cookies and the graham crackers. And none of them have worked out properly. One gets the impression that they wrote up one generic recipe for their custard base and copy-pasted it for every ice cream. Or that the baking instructions for the baked goods at the back of the book were rough guesses. I've had to cut the salt in half for every recipe otherwise the ice cream tastes like a salt lick. The cooking times for the chocolate were wildly off. The cornflake cookies were done after 13 minutes--doing it for the recommended 30 would have resulted in charcoal briquettes. And so on.
There are good ideas in here, but the execution is terrible.
Another interesting difference in their ice cream base is the relatively small amount of egg yolks compared to most other recipes I have seen. This can be a bit of a problem for the home cook as its easy for someone like myself, who only makes ice cream once a month at the most, to slightly over cook the custard and end up straining out a bit of scrambled egg. If you end up over cooking the base too much the ice cream doesn't set well, so adding an additional yolk or too might be useful to the home cook who doesn't make ice cream several times a day' most other recipes I've read use at least 5 yolks per quart, the recipes in this book require only 3.
The primary reason I bought the book was for some of the shops more famous (or infamous) recipes such as secret breakfast (the bourbon and corn flake recipe). Unfortunately the bourbon ice cream, probably the reason everyone bought the book, contains a major typo and calls for double the bourbon necessary. I think someone has already pointed this out, but its worth repeating as the ice cream doesn't fully set with the appropriate amount and I can't imagine what would happen if you put the written amount; I imagine it would not set at all! to re-iterate the correct amount is 1/4 cup per quart and not the 1/2 cup written in the book. I happened to see the correction on the shops twitter feed around the release of the book, but I imagine no one woulds know otherwise.
I also wish the book include gram measurements as some other books do. I find it very convenient to weigh everything in one or two bowls rather than have to clean multiple measuring cups and was a little surprised that a cookbook by a former pastry chef at a fine dining restaurant did not do so (the owner used to be the pastry chef at Coi in SF a 2 star michelin restaurant). I would also agree with the reviewer who mentioned this book could have been a little more detailed about technique as it appears obvious it is meant for a home cook.
For me the book has served its purpose in teaching me the secrets to my favorite flavors, but I can't imagine someone not a fan of the shop having any interest and would agree with the reviewer that recommends the David Lebovitz book The Perfect Scoop as the best all around ice cream book - Lebovitz other dessert books and blog are great too! I also appreciate the story behind the shop and other details of the book that someone unfamiliar would probably not care about.
Conversely, the Breakfast ice cream was runny beyond runny. It just would not solidify. Incidentally, we've NEVER had a problem making ice cream, just from this book. Beware.
The book is very interesting and whimsical, but it does not seem that the recipes were tested or proofed.
Directions are not clear.
Who adds 2tsp of salt to a one to two quart recipe of ice cream? For starters, the ice cream won't freeze or harden with that much salt. Second, way too much salt to be healthy per serving.
Did the authors not want to share their recipes? Did anyone test the small quantity recipes? Were they in a rush to publish? Did their proofreader go on vacation? Really sorry to have to say this, but....
Great concept and inspirations for unique ice cream flavors if you already know how to make and perfect your ice cream recipes. But, don't buy it if you are planning to use the recipes in the book to make the ice cream.