A sure sign that summer is near: Publishers are rolling out their latest batch of ice cream and frozen treat cookbooks.
For those without the cash or counter space for an ice cream maker, Sunil Vijayakar's "Ice" (Ryland, Peters & Small, 2007, $12.95) is the answer. This small book covers sorbets, granitas and sherbets, and includes many recipes that don't require an ice cream machine.
The mixed berry iced souffles, for example, use a food processor to puree berries, which then are folded into whipped egg whites and Greek-style yogurt. The resulting treat is airy, elegant and delicious.
Even easier are the crushed ice sticks (also called golas). Essentially, crushed ice is pressed around a stick, then used to sop up fruit-based cordials.
For those who have indulged in an ice cream maker, there is David Lebovitz' "The Perfect Scoop" (Ten Speed Press, 2007, $24.95), a hefty treatment of numerous ice creams, sorbets and granitas, as well as the things that go with and in them.
Though equipment is key, Lebovitz' recipes are simple and easy to follow. Many also are creative, such as sweet potato ice cream with maple-glazed pecans and roasted banana ice cream. There's plenty for those with less adventurous tastes, too. Including the lemon-buttermilk sherbet, which was deliciously rich and lemony.