Experiments in ice cream
One evening last week, my husband phoned me from the store and asked me if I needed anything. I said ‘ice cream.’ He decided to surprise me.
After dinner, he brought me some frozen goodness, remaining secretive about the brand. I could tell that it was an extra dark chocolate, because it had a very dark color. I tried a spoonful and tasted an intense chocolate flavor. My first taste of it didn’t exactly lead me to ice cream–it reminded me of chocolate mousse. It had the flavor of an intense creamy homemade chocolate dessert that managed to have the consistency of ice cream. Very strong on the cocoa, slightly nutty. Completely different from any other chocolate ice cream I had ever had, but in a good way.
My husband grabbed the pint so I could see what it was, and it threw me for a loop. Goat’s milk ice cream, Deep Chocolate flavor. Not that it should seem so farfetched–we eat goat’s milk cheese, and it’s pretty delicious. It’s only logical that we should do other useful things with this milk.
Pros of goat’s milk? It does a body quite good. It’s a complete protein. It’s much easier to digest than cow’s milk; it’s not lactose-free, but it has a lot less lactose than its moo counterpart. It’s also lower in fat. I was quite pleased to find out that the serving of ice cream I was having had 160 calories and 6 grams of fat. The same amount of chocolate ice cream from Haagen-Dazs would have run me 270 calories and 18 grams of fat. The biggest pro in my book: it boasts a super short ingredient list. This is a biggie for me–I hate seeing loads of chemicals in my food (which is just one of the reasons I mainly cook at home). I look at these pints and their ingredient lists read something like: goat milk, evaporated cane juice, egg yolks, pure vanilla locust bean gum, guar gum, carrageenan.
Cons? This particular brand of goat’s milk ice cream, Laloo’s, was pricey: $6.99, a hefty price tag for just a pint. Although if I was unable to consume cow’s milk and I discovered something like this, I’m sure I would easily cough up the seven bucks to get my ice cream fix. Another con, it’s a bit hard to find. A 100-mile radius search on Laloo’s website let me know that I’d only be able to find this ice cream at Whole Foods. I also conducted a 100-mile radius search for other cities, and similarly the brand is almost exclusively available at organic specialty stores and markets.
Considering that Laloo’s is currently the only commercial goat’s milk ice cream out there, I give them kudos for featuring a wide array of flavors. Their line-up includes fun flavors like Vanilla Snowflake, Deep Chocolate, Strawberry Darling, Rumplemint, Capraccino (a coffee flavor that plays on the root word for goat “capra”) and Black Mission Fig. They also have a couple of different frozen yogurts as well as an ice cream sandwich. Unfortunately, my neighborhood Whole Foods only carried two flavors–another disappointment. I’d love to try the strawberry, but I only have the chocolate and vanilla available at my store.
I marched (as in got in my car and drove) to Whole Foods a week later and got the Vanilla Snowflake. While I do generally prefer vanilla ice cream to chocolate, I assumed this would have a more pungent flavor than the chocolate because it wouldn’t have the benefit of a strong outside flavor to stand up to the goat milk flavor. I was quite wrong. I actually fell pretty hard for the vanilla. It had a very strong vanilla bean flavor–a big plus for me. It was intensely creamy and it smelled amazing–like sweetness, vanilla and cream.
Verdict: There’s no other like Chunky Monkey, but goat’s milk ice cream has earned a favorable spot in my freezer.