Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Ice Cream Terrine ala Wendy Lyn Watson Mystery Lover's Kitchen


Double Sigh...

And I use the word "Sigh" because I can't put the words I really said in my blog.  I Shazam-ed this recipe up good and proper.  My own fault, no one to blame and I am shazam-ed off about it.

BUT, here's an "in process" shot of what could have been...

Layers of fruit and fruit compote between layers of flavored ice cream.  Just imagine what slices of this would have/could have looked like if I had just left it in the freezer for 24 hours and not 6.


Double Double Sigh...

But it was tasty as all get out.

Here's the story...

A recent addition to the 6 Merry Murderesses of the MYSTERY LOVERS KITCHEN (a wonderful blog featuring recipes posted daily from mystery book authors who all write culinary themed murder mysteries) is Wendy Lyn Watson, author of the "A Mystery Ala Mode" ice cream shop mysteries.  Just imagine, when the real temperature outside is 107, spending the days dipping specialty ice cream flavors (and you nights keeping your friends and family out of jail for a murder they didn't commit, there is a down side to everything... but I digress).  Wendy is quite a character herself.  She lives in Texas, works a day job teaching constitutional law and bucks the trend of stereotypical Texans and lives her life as a vegetarian.  Pinko, liberal, vegetarian college professor must stand out to her neighbors...

Good thing she makes killer ice cream.  It is a little difficult to point you to her recipes on the MYSTERY LOVERS KITCHEN (remember, someone different posts each day of the week).  Fortunately, over at that handy site,, you can see all her submissions on a single handy page.  SO far, Wendy Lyn has only submitted three recipes, but she usually adds when ever she does a new post on MLK.  You can find that handy page by clicking HERE, and then clicking on any of the photos to reach her original posts on the MLK blog.

I love reading Wendy's posts.

I already was inspired to alter a recipe of hers once, when I made an Arnold Palmer Sorbet (actually, it is a Dirty Florida Golfer Sorbet, but that's a long complicated reasoning for the name that you will have to go to my original post on that to understand... and again, I digress).  Wendy Lyn posted a recipe for a what she called a Porch Swing Sorbet, using tea and lemon juice.  Reminded me of my wife's favorite drink from our 6 month sabbatical (boondoggle) in the US Virgin Islands.  SO, with Wendy Lyn's help, she answered all my email questions in rapid order, I was inspired to make that success.

But again, no fault of Wendy Lyn (I wonder, I'm calling her Wendy Lyn cause that's what any Texan named Wendy Lyn should be called.  Wonder if anyone else calls her that??? But again... Digression).   Like I said, My fault for the way this looks (or does not look).

Oh, let me tell you a bit about, A PARFAIT MURDER before I get to the recipe.  This is the third book in the series, but the first one that I read.  While I am sure that reading the first two would have made the book more enjoyable with the characters more familiar, Wendy Lyn did a terrific job of introducing old characters for a new audience.  I never felt like I was coming in on the middle of a book; very accessible for new readers.

Which is good, as the action starts fast and furious.  While the main character (Tallulah, just love that name but everyone calls her Tally) owns an ice cram parlor, only about 10 pages is set in the parlor.  Most of the action is centered around the state fair.  And action happens fast when an evil from the bast shows up at the fair.  Paternity issues, scams (business and personal), love affairs going south (and some going north) and a dead body keep the story moving to a very satisfying climax.

One of the things I have a habit of doing is asking the ladies who murder (well write about it anyway) if they get to write off the subject of their books on their taxes.  Imagine being able to write off Starbucks, Cheese Shops, BBQ, Organizational tools and more from your taxes.  Well, that's a normal question for me.  But Professor Wendy Lyn does set about 10 pages of the book in a gentleman's club.

So, Professor Wendy Lyn... When doing research, did you ask for a receipt???

Seriously, A PARFAIT MURDER is a perfect summer read... dead lawyers, strip clubs, a romantic proposal (complete with nature's fireworks), wonderfully written characters and just the right touch of an ending that fooled me and entertained.

And best of all, as with most of the MLK author's books, RECIPES!!!

There is a recipe in the book for an ice cream terrine.  It sounded amazing and I had a vision of the way I wanted it to look.  In her recipe in the book, she offers plenty of suggestions that would have worked fine had I followed her ideas.  Layering candy bar bites,  nuts, peanut brittle, etc in between layers of ice cream, all topped off with a fudge sauce.  That's the basic idea, and I am sure it would have worked great.

Instead, I had a vision...

It took 3 days, but I started by making 3 fruit flavored ice creams.  I made a peach and strawberry compote (just fruit, diced, simmered till nearly liquid with a little lemon juice and sugar (drop me a note if you need a recipe).  I also made a virgin Banana Foster recipe with butter and sugar to make caramel combined with mashed cooked bananas.

I added a bit of each to three different "plain" Vanilla ice cream to make marbleized flavored ice cream.

I also added some fruit to the compotes and caramel to make a fruit filled filling...

And as Wendy Lyn suggested in A PARFAIT MURDER,  I lined the bottom of a loaf pan with parchment paper so it would remove easily.  A layer of peach filling on the bottom

A layer of Ice cream

A layer of Strawberry filling, followed by another layer of ice cream...

Caramel and Bananas next, followed by one more layer of ice cream...

pop in the freezer until WELL FROZEN.  Just imagine what these would look like in 1 inch slices.

BUT... be warned,

Do not schedule a dinner party for only 6-8 hours after you assemble this.  Plan ahead!

Because if you don't, 1 minute after you remove the "loaf" from the pan, it oozes.

I cried just a bit as it oozed, picturing what might have been.

Then I said... Well, let's just say I said "sigh"... Double "Sigh"

Then I made the best of it, served up some soft ice cream and fruit, never apologized and everyone thought it was a wonderful dish... So much fruit, so much ice cream and the fudge topping (recipe also in A PARFAIT MURDER).

A delicious Success ... A delicious failure that I plan to revisit soon!

Thanks Wendy Lyn for the WONDERFUL inspiration.  I promise to get it right next time.  A PARFAIT MURDER deserved better.

And everyone else, take a jump over to MYSTERY LOVERS KITCHEN.  My personal theory is that the ladies are very competitive.  They each try to post their best so that their recipes will shine through the confusion of six different regulars (and always a seventh guest post).  I have gotten some of my very favorite recipes from them.

These posts continue to highlight bloggers and recipes that I have found on  ""...

Old friends will know me as Dave from my blog "My Year on the Grill".  You new folks probably found this blog while looking around the website,  "".  Either way, I am the driving force behind both.  

I hope that you enjoy my posts, my take on the work of others (but really, isn't all cooking building on the work of those who cooked before us???).  I hope I have peaked your curiosity on Wendy lyn and the rest of the Merry Murderesses of  MYSTERY LOVERS KITCHEN... Drop in on them and say hi for me!


  1. Another GREAT post Dave and I get to meet somebody new.....this is such a great idea of yours! I am hoping to try some blog recipes out is difficult with the B and B, as I have set menus, but we have a free period for a while, so I should be able to try a few new recipes!
    LOVELY series of photos too!
    Karen ~ Lavender and Lovage

  2. Aw, man. I can't believe it didn't work for you, Dave! Such a bummer. (Though I'm with you - as long as it tastes good, it doesn't need to be pretty.)

    If I had to guess, I'd bet that there was so much sugar in your fruit sauces that freezing would be a challenge. Not that it can't happen, mind you, but it would take a long time.

    I hope you give the recipe another shot, and I hope it turns out pretty AND delicious next time.

  3. It doesn't matter the look as long as it tastes good! I hope you give this recipe another time may be this time try it in individual small cups for shorter frozen time.

  4. Awww Dave ~sigh~ and double ~sigh~... I thought it looked Delicious, because I didn't know what it was supposed to look like. You pulled it off just like a great chef would and you delighted in the Yummmms and Mmmmmmms from your guests... Just like a great chef does! Cause that is the ultimate reason we cook. Its the Yummmmms & the Mmmmmmms not the "ohhh prettys". Now please pass me a bowl :o)
    Take care there

    Rainey @ The Project Table

  5. Thank you for your idea.Reading your profile I loved the part whtre you say you are cook from Cul de Sac:))

  6. innovative dessert looks wonderful

  7. I have to disagree with you - it looks delicious!
    and I'd love to eat it anytime