Ready for refreshing homemade ice cream? Get cranking.

By Staci Coleman
August 21, 2006
Howard L. Puckett

In the midst of Indian summer, nothing hits the spot like a scoop of homemade ice cream. Our recipes for frozen treats may not lower the mercury outside, but this straight-from-the-churn refresher delivers a delicious chill.

Blackberry Ice Cream, one of many delicious recipes in The Coastal Living Cookbook , features fresh berries, widely available in supermarkets, farmers' markets, and roadside stands until first frost.

Prefer nuts? Walnut Ice Cream, the perfect companion for French Toast with Poached Pears and Caramel Sauce, easily shifts from stand-alone to condiment―and back again.

For those with more exotic tastes, try Mango Mascarpone Ice Cream. Although it's definitely not one of the classic flavors from childhood, it's just as memorable and likely to become a new favorite.

For a fresh spin on Kick the Can, try Coffee Can Ice Cream. Rather than using a hand-turned or electric freezer, let the kids kick or roll ice cream-filled coffee cans until the contents freeze.

For a more adult taste, give Tequila-Lime Sorbet a shot. This nondairy alternative offers all the cooling power of ice cream with an added kick. It's a margarita-like treat that will transport you to a Mexican cantina.

No matter what recipe you choose, there are a few important things to remember when making homemade ice cream.

• Never skimp on freshness―high-quality ingredients yield premium ice cream.
• Extreme temperatures breed impatience, but resist the urge to serve homemade ice cream before putting it in the freezer for a few hours. Ice cream needs to "ripen" to reach its best taste and texture.
• Always follow manufacturer's directions and make sure the drain hole in your ice cream maker isn't blocked. Otherwise, salty water may overflow into the canister and contaminate the ice cream.
• After churning, dispose of the icy wastewater properly, as the salt will kill grass and other plants.
• On the off-chance that there are leftovers from these scrumptious recipes, be sure to put clear plastic wrap on the surface of the ice cream to prevent ice crystals.