• Posted by Califia Suntree on June 21st, 2010, 4:42 PM

    In the process of working on Be Thrifty, I came across creative uses for all kinds of food bits that might otherwise be tossed (cheese nubbins, celery orphans, stale pita). You’ll have to buy the book to get the full story on those, but here’s a freebie. I recently baked a cake and then shaved pieces off of it so it would be a perfect rectangle, and was left with a heaping plate of chocolate cake parts. The thrifty Brits are a good always a good place to turn, so I thought I’d make an English trifle, with layers of cake, whipped cream and berries. But then, I realized, I’d have to eat it all at once. I have no dinner parties on the horizon, and didn’t want to basically force myself to eat an entire chocolate trifle, so that idea was nixed. The solution (as with most dilemmas) was ice cream. I had a partially eaten carton of vanilla ice cream, which I softened slightly and then mashed up with the cake bits. (If I had had peanut butter chips or caramel on hand, I would’ve added them, too.) I refroze the treat, and dug in. This is also a great way to use cookies or brownies that are going stale–the ice cream softens them up, and they freeze to a nice chewiness. There you have it–the cheapest ice cream flavor (vanilla) transformed into a Ben & Jerry’s worthy frozen showstopper.

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