Make the Most of Corn Season
For the lightest corn fritters, we minimized the number of fillers we added. We processed some of the kernels to use as a thickener rather than more flour or cornmeal. This step also helped the fresh corn flavor shine through. Browning the corn puree in a skillet drove off excess moisture and deepened the flavor even more. Adding cayenne, nutty Parmesan cheese, and oniony chives balanced the natural sweetness of the corn, and a touch of cornstarch crisped the exteriors and helped provide a wonderful textural contrast with the light and creamy interiors.
Testing Ice Cream Machines
Ice Cream Makers
A good electric ice cream maker makes it easy to produce customized ice cream, frozen yogurt, or sorbet at home. The machines come in two main styles: canister-style and self-refrigerating. The former has a removable coolant-lined canister that must be frozen before use. Self-refrigerating machines are generally much pricier, with built-in compressors that chill the canisters so there’s no need for prefreezing. When we discovered that the top self-refrigerating model from our 2010 testing had been discontinued, we knew it was time for an update. We rounded up six ice cream makers priced from about $34 to about $400: four canister-style (one of which was an attachment for our favorite KitchenAid stand mixer) and two self-refrigerating. We churned vanilla and coffee-crunch ice creams, raspberry sorbet, and frozen yogurt in each machine.
Chocolate Ice Cream
There’s little more satisfying than a scoop (or two) of chocolate ice cream—but which one should you buy? Since our former winner from Ben & Jerry’s is no longer being sold in supermarkets, and because in 2016 Nestlé reformulated two of the ice creams included in that tasting—Edy’s Chocolate Ice Cream and Edy’s Slow Churned Chocolate—we decided it was time to retest. To find the best chocolate ice cream, we gathered seven nationally available products and asked 21 tasters to sample them plain and in mini ice cream cones.