on 20 December 2010
If only I had known how easy making ice cream is, I would have been doing it for years! This book is easy to follow, with such a diverse set of recipes, you will not fail to find a flavour that appeals to you. I have never before read a cookery book which is so extensively researched going into all the history as well as the science bit too, if Heston Blumenthingy recommends it as his inspiration then I think that says a lot.
I thoroughly concur with the other positive reviews here about what a fantastic book this is. I have made a number of the recipes now and have found every single one to produce fantastic results (my family have loved them all). Some of the flavours sound a little unusual but that just makes me want to try them more.
This is the perfect christmas present for any adventurous amateur cook (or indeed any very accomplished professional cook), and who knows, you might even be lucky enough to be invited round to sample the results!
on 30 November 2010
There can't be much more to say on the topic of ice cream than is in here. Some really interesting historical stuff - well quite a lot really, the authors are obvioulsy very passionate about ice cream - and an in-depth look at the chemistry and physics of turning simple ingredients into the food of gods :). But save that for later, you can read it when you've made your first batch. And start with the chocolate - utterly divine!
The recipes are hugely varied, with some being really off-the-wall (including rose petals, balsamic vinegar - you can see why Heston Blumenthal put a quote on the front). Most are super-simple and while some are a bit tricky I promise you they are worth the effort.
What really got me was the difference between what I managed to turn out (simply amazing, and I'm not a great cook) compared to the ice cream I (used to!) buy from the supermarket. Even the premium brands like Green and Blacks or Ben and Jerry's are put to shame.
All in all, the best cook book I've bought in years.
on 20 September 2011
I can't imagine how anyone could give this book less than 5 stars: it has everything - history, technical information and great recipes. Personally I prefer vanilla but there is Nutella ice cream, Terry's Chocolate Orange ice cream, Earl Grey and even Mars Bar. So there should be something for everyone.
And most importantly, THEY WORK. I have tried several ice cream recipe books with varied results. So far I have had no failures or disappointments with this book. Some popular ice creams, like chocolate, are split into 'rich' and 'everyday', which is useful.
It may be dearer than some of the other ice cream books out there but there's a reason for that. Ice cream takes a good while to make from start to finish, and it's very frustrating when it goes wrong, or it just doesn't taste nice. It's great to have a book with recipes which I trust.
on 30 November 2010
good-humour man (see alternative posting) is clearly anything but good-humoured. He is clearly not someone you'd want to know or someone you'd want to rely on for an objective view as he appears to have some wider, destructive, agenda. Of course, he's entitled to his view but my strong advice is `make up your own mind' - I have and I continue to hold this substantial update to Ices in the same very high esteem that I held for the original book by Robin and Caroline Weir (now severely worn through extensive use over many years).
Thanks to the original book I have become a very enthusiastic amateur ice cream maker though I have little knowledge of, nor interest in, the detailed chemistry or the commercial production of ice cream.
From my perspective there are two particular issues which are the ultimate test of any ice cream guide. The first is the advice, instruction, guidance or other information about equipment and technique as they impact on the basic, underlying, recipes. For example, making a custard, like making a souffle, can be a real challenge and I have found this book to be outstanding in its easy to follow coverage simplifying and de-mystifying the very basics. Indeed, the addition, for example, of instructions in this new edition for making a custard in a microwave, is simply brilliant. The second requirement for me is the presentation of well tried recipes for interesting, unusual and inventive flavours. I can say with certainty that every recipe I have made from Ices and this new edition has delivered superb results (allowing always for my own occasional failings as a cook, as an ingredient buyer, or as an ice cream maker).
This is, in my opinion, one of the the best and most useful cookery books I own - I find it comprehensive, acccurate and informative. Most importantly, there is no doubt that all the recipes have been thoroughly tested and are wonderfully easy to follow.
on 18 August 2011
Caroline and Robin Weir, first book was published fifteen years ago. This book is an updated and modern version to fit within today's generation of enthusiastic cooks. There are 336 pages, pink hard cover and full of simple colour pictures. The recipes are very descriptive, easy to follow.
The book cover the myths, origins and history of ice creams and sorbets. The difference between ices and gelato. There's also a helpful guide of equipment , ingredients from basic to more elaborate flavours recipes and different freezing techniques. The book also contains recipes for sauces, syrups and toppings such as brittle, meringues, crumbles and pralines and sugar glass. Towards the end of the book there are recipes and some drawings about sodas, sundays and floats.
It's a quite comprehensive guide to ices.There's even a chapter for making ices commercially. I bought this book on Amazon. You don't necessarily need an ice cream maker, if you do great. If you don't have one, the process will be a bit of more laborious. The ice creams and sorbet I made were really delicious and better than shop bought ones. I successfully tried three recipes of this book and they worked! No, I don't have a ice cream maker...I made rich vanilla, papaya ice cream and pineapple & mint sorbet. Delicious! What's your favourite flavor?
on 16 July 2011
Tells you everything you need to know and more to make superb ices at home.
If you have their previous book you may want to look at a copy in a bookshop to decide if it is worth getting this as well. For me there are enough new facts and recipes that it is.
The recipes are a balance of ancient, modernish tradition and new wave. If you are keen on exploring new flavour combinations you will want to look at other sources as well. But as the Weirs say, some of the suggestions you find around, especially on the internet, simply don't work. This book gives you enough information about what works and why that you can judge for yourself, and adjust the fat/sugar/liquid balance to make dodgy recipes work better. The book is also a good read, with plenty of information for collectors of useless information.
My only nitpicks are that they say twice that the list of suppliers will include a source of good rosewater. It doesn't. And they reject the idea of mincemeat ice cream on the grounds that frozen suet would taste horrible. So it would, but the recipe I tried (Lola's) emphasises that you must use suet-free mincemeat. It was an excellent accompaniment to chestnut ice cream last December.
These are very minor points, so overall, highly recommended.
I don't usually have a go at other reviewers but I find "Good Humour Man's" long screeds profoundly silly. He accuses the book of failing to be what it does not set out to be - a scientific manual for the professional or semi-professional. The subtitle could I suppose make this clearer "A definitive guide to making ices at home" which it most certainly is. There is a recently published book which does what "Good Humour Man" is after. Clearly though he doesn't need it himself, since he seems already to have the facts at hand. Incidentally, "Good Humor" is a major industrial brand of American ice cream these days, part of Unilever.
on 3 January 2012
Ignore the bonkers 2 star review, this book is quite simply incredible. All my other ice cream books have now gone to the charity shop as this book contains everything i will ever need plus more. I have already made countless recipes from the book and every single one of them has been amazing. It is so well written and inspires you to be creative. The history section and all the other information is superb too, call me crazy but i genuinely couldn't put it down, i have read it from cover to cover...something which the 2 star reviewer obviously didn't do judging by many of his misinformed comments. I personally would side with Heston Blumenthal's (a man with 3 Michelin Stars) view of this book than that other reviewer. Buy a copy and i am sure you will feel the same.
on 29 May 2016
I own this book for about 3 years now and honestly the longer I have it the less I understand all the acclaim it receives.
First, I have to admit that the book is very nice. The stories behind ice cream making, the ideas behind recipes and the pictures make it a very nice coffee table book or a source of inspiration for your own ice cream ideas.
I didn't try many of the recipes because all of my trials ended with a conclusion that something must be wrong. This led me to some more research on ice cream making and further reading which improved my skills and outcomes a lot. I then came back to this book and gave it another chance. No luck unfortunately. After some deeper analysis I found out that the authors made huge amount of mistakes in their formulas not to mention that they contradict themselves several times (i.e. their own recipes won't follow the guidelines they provide in the last part of the book).
To sum up, if you are thinking seriously of making good ice cream this might not be the best choice. Yes, this book will provide basic principles and many ideas on ice cream tastes and it can be an entertaining read. Just don't expect too much.
on 30 November 2010
Until such time when good-humour-man (see first review) regales the world with a much better one, this is by far the most useful and comprehensive book on ices since Emy's L'art de bien faire les glaces d'office of 1768. It seems to me that good-humour-man is expressing an opinion that is rooted more in professional jealousy than in objective criticism. Liddel and Weir start their extraordinary book with an attack on mass-produced ice creams, offering many sound reasons for making much better ones at home. I suspect this stance has upset good-humour-man, whose attitude seems to be "how dare amateurs tell the world how to make ice cream when we know better in the trade". Science of course is an amazing aid to good practice and is necessary in producing uniform (though usually boring results) on an industrial scale, but incredibly good ice cream has been made for centuries by amateur cooks and artisans who did not know one end of a refractometer from another - and still is in this home.
The vast majority of readers of this book will be looking for exciting and practical recipes which can be made in a domestic kitchen. They will not be disappointed. It is jam-packed with fresh and imaginative ideas - wonderful and often unusual flavours. Invest your money in this book rather than a refractometer or a PhD in physics. Brilliant!!
on 20 January 2011
I came upon this book by chance looking for some recipes for an ice cream machine I was given for christmas. I am absolutely delighted with the book. It is extremely comprehensive (covering everything from the history of ices to explanations of all equipment), well written, beautifully illustrated and absolutely stuffed with fabulous and tempting recipes. If you are looking for a book about ice cream, this is definitely the one to buy.