Ice cream and architecture — these are not two ideas that normally go together. In the new “Coolhaus: Ice Cream Cookbook,” however, they are combined into one ooey, gooey, awesome idea: farchitecture, “food plus architecture.”
Between the sleek, pop-art covers, this book has a wealth of information on ice cream, cookies and architecture, not to mention a full back-story on a foodie phenomenon that has been taking California by storm. This cookbook is not just useful for cooking, but also fun to read.
Coolhaus creators Natasha Case and Freya Estreller share their cult-favorite ice cream sandwich recipes here for those who may not otherwise have a chance to dine at their popular food trucks. Many of their sandwiches are named for the famous architects from whom Case and Estreller got their business/baking inspiration. In fact, the name of their company is partly derived from the architect Rem Koolhaas, the duo’s biggest hero and the “patron saint” of their sandwiches.
Case and Estreller, with the help of Kathleen Squires, write that they started out selling their goods from an old postal truck bought on Craigslist from “three gangsta thugs who were, we suspect, using it to sell pot.” They first set up shop at Coachella, a music festival in Southern California, where, despite a rocky start, they found their first fans.
Now they have fleets of trucks selling their signature desserts all over the country, including Los Angeles, Austin, New York and Dallas. Sadly, they have not yet made it as far as North Dakota. But with the help of this book, gourmets have a chance to try making these cool treats on their own.
The chapters are divided into sections on ice creams, gelatos, sorbets, cookies and other goodies like shakes and toppings. They give all the details on making both the frozen treats and the cookies from scratch, a laborious process but one they deem necessary for proper flavor.
Recipes for ice creams they have include classic, boozy, cheesy, nutty, savory and even smoky and spicy. Some of their zanier flavors are Balsamic Fig Mascarpone, Pistachio Black Truffle and even Peking Duck. Of course, they have normal flavors for the less daring, too, like Cookies and Sweet Cream or Salted Caramel. Then they have the cookie recipes and options for combining the two.
Whether or not readers have the time to try out the recipes, this book will keep them entertained. The design is graphic and punchy, yet does not distract from the drool-worthy, food-porn images that grace almost every page. Pictures are, after all, an essential component for any good cookbook.
At a time where it seems everything is processed by the truckload thousands of miles away in factories, “Coolhaus” brings an old-fashioned, tried-and-true sentiment to the table. Things taste better when they are made fresh, from scratch.