DINE inns celebrate National Ice Cream Day with favorite cool recipes

ice cream photoThe heat is on in New England, and with summer temps come all kinds of ways to cool down.  The Distinctive Inns of New England not only offer the ideal summer getaway destination, with everything from lakes, rivers and oceans for cool dips, but the 9 DINE inns’  kitchens are filled with frozen treats too.   Either way, you’ll scream for ice cream and leave everyone you share these treats with asking for the recipe too, especially during Ice Cream Month celebrated throughout July and on National Ice Cream Day celebrated today, on July 16th!

If you can’t make it to DINE country, try some of your DINE innkeepers’ favorite ice cream recipes in your own kitchen.

Sweet Corn Ice Cream from Rabbit Hill Inn

We’ve heard of corn on the cob dripping in sweet, salty butter, but in ice cream?  Leave it the Rabbit Hill Inn to come up with a recipe for sweet corn ice cream, and guess what?  It’s really, really good!


5 ears fresh sweet corn

4 cups heavy cream

1 cup of sugar

7 egg yolks

2 cups half and half

Vanilla Bean, split


First cut the raw kernels from the ears of corn. Place the kernels, the cobs, and the split vanilla bean, in the heavy cream and simmer until reduced by half. Add one cup of sugar, bring back to boil and remove from heat. Remove the cobs and vanilla bean.

In a blender, puree this cream mix with the kernels until fully pureed. Return to the heat and simmer. In a bowl, add some of the hot mixture to the eggs yolks while whipping. Return this egg mixture to the boiling puree stirring constantly until it lightly thickens. Strain through a chinois or fine mesh strainer. Add cold half and half and cool mixture in fridge.

Freeze this mix according to your ice cream freezer directions. Enjoy all the applause and compliments that will come your way.

Lemon Basil Sorbet, handmade at the Grafton Inn

Here’s another perfect way to cool off on a hot summer day with cool lemon basil  sorbet. This recipe from the Grafton Inn is ridiculously simple and feeds a crowd. It was served just this week at their Phelps Barn Pub and was a true crowd-pleaser on a warm summer night.


1 quart of simple syrup (equal parts sugar and water)

1 quart of fresh squeezed lemon juice

2-3 T minced basil


Mix together all ingredients and place in ice cream machine according to manufacturer’s directions.  Allow to ripen overnight for the best flavor.  Yields 3 quarts (enough for a crowd!).

Rich “Frozen Custard” Vanilla Ice Cream from Manor on Golden Pond

If you’re looking for a rich frozen custard, turn to this winner of a recipe from the Manor On Golden Pond. Served throughout the summer, guests rave about this delicious treat, the perfect way to end a dinner in the Van Horn Dining Room or the Three Cocks Pub.


1 lbs. cream

1 lbs. milk

9 ounces sugar

3 tahitian vanilla beans, split and scraped

10 egg yolks

.3 oz. plain salt


Heat the cream, milk, sugar and salt along with the vanilla seeds and pods in a double boiler until the mixture is hot and the sugar is dissolved.  As the mixture heats, prepare an ice bath large enough to receive the top part of the double boiler.

Temper the egg yolks into the hot cream and return to the double boiler, whisking continuously until the mixture is thickened to a nappe consistency.  IMMEDIATELY transfer the bowl of the double boiler to the ice bath and stir vigorously until the mixture is cooled considerably.

Refrigerate overnight before churning into ice cream (don’t forget to remove the vanilla pods!). Prepare according to your ice cream maker instructions.

Cool garnishes for ice cream from Deerfield Inn

Over the years, Deerfield Inn innkeepers have shared their ideas for creating organic ice cream toppers and hope that once you have your ice cream of choice, you can create some super cool garnishes and toppings from your own garden the Deerfield Inn way.

Gather totally fresh pesticide-free mint leaves from your herb garden, and add them to fresh egg whites, white sugar and some spearmint extract to start.  Whip up the egg whites until frothy, and dip the leaves into the foam. Lay out the leaves on a wire rack, sprinkle granulated sugar mixed with a dash of added spearmint extract over them, then leave them  to dry.  Store in parchment paper layers in airtight container.

Candied flowers make ice cream taste better too.  The process is the same as above, but superfine sugar is better here. The flowers should be pesticide free, and the petals should be brushed rather than dunked. Let the petals dry without touching each other.  Some examples of edible flowers are citrus blossoms, pansy, jasmine, nasturtium, and of course the delightful violet.

You’ll find hundreds more recipes from DINE kitchens at www.Distinctiveinns.com or  click here.

We look forward to seeing you soon in DINE country for some cool summer fun. Be sure to book your stay directly with the inn for the best availability.

In Massachusetts:  Harbor Light Inn in Marblehead, Deerfield Inn in Historic Deerfield and Captain’s House Inn in Chatham on Cape Cod

In Vermont:  Rabbit Hill Inn in Lower Waterford & Grafton Inn in Grafton

In New Hampshire:  Manor on Golden Pond in Holderness & Chesterfield Inn in West Chesterfield

In Connecticut: Inn at Harbor Hill Marina in Niantic

In Maine:  Inn at English Meadows in Kennebunkport

Top Photo: Guests cooling off on the patio at Captain’s House Inn.