Beat the Heat and Melt Your Heart With Ice Cream

Is there life beyond plain vanilla, the world's number-one flavor? Sure. There's chocolate malt, Rainforest Crunch, mint chip, butter pecan, raspberry cheesecake, peach, strawberry, almond and pistachio. And that's just the beginning.

Today, Americans eat more ice cream than anyone else in the world, averaging a whopping 23 quarts per person per year. If you live in New England, you eat an average of 35 quarts.

If you don't have time to head to the ice cream parlor, you can whip up a frosty treat in your own kitchen. Sink into a dish of Ripe Strawberry Ice Cream, a cool Banana Thick Shake, a luscious Mango Freeze or a perfect Vanilla Malt. If you can't eat dairy, no problem; a Coffee Granita is a dairy-free way to take the searing heat out of the midday sun.

So this summer when the mercury climbs, stop sweating and start scooping your way to a chilly 15-minute vacation.

Bruce Weinstein is the author of The Ultimate Ice Cream Book Copyright © 1999, William Morrow & Company

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