Here’s a little trivia you might enjoy. Where is the ice cream capital of the world?

Believe it or not, it’s a small city, population only 10,000; Le Mars, Iowa. In 1994, it was officially recognized as the ice cream capital of the world, as it produces the most ice cream, under the Blue Bunny brand. Blue Bunny’s parent company started in Le Mars as a dairy farm in 1913.

Here is a surprisingly easy ice cream cake to make, and what a homemade flavor you get. It is worth buying a 9-inch springform pan for this summer dessert.

The recipe comes from an interesting cookbook published in 1993. Hundreds of community cookbooks were collected nationwide from all kinds of organizations; churches, hospital auxiliaries, clubs, etc. (I love those little cookbooks — good home cooking). Thousands of recipes were tested and rated until the cream of the crop was chosen for the book. This particular recipe comes from a medical center auxiliary in Fort Oglethorpe, Ga., that published its book for fundraising.

Chocolate-Amaretto Ice Cream Cake

Serves 8 to 10


11/2 cups chocolate wafer or cookie crumbs

1/2 cup slivered almonds, toasted and crushed

1/3 cup butter or margarine, melted

4 (1 ounce) squares semisweet chocolate, melted

1/4 cup amaretto

1, 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk

1, 8-ounce carton sour cream

3 cups whipping cream, whipped

Optional: additional whipped cream for garnish

Combine chocolate wafer crumbs, almonds, and butter; firmly press 1 cup of crumb mixture in bottom of a lightly greased 9-inch springform pan. If you don’t have a springform pan, use a 9-inch deep dish pie or cake pan, which has been lined with waxed paper, so that you can lift it out onto a serving plate.

Set prepared crust and remaining crumb mixture aside.

Combine chocolate and amaretto in a large bowl; stir well. Add sweetened condensed milk and sour cream; stir well. Fold in whipped cream.

Spoon half of chocolate mixture into prepared crust; sprinkle with half of reserved crumb mixture. Repeat procedure with remaining chocolate mixture and crumbs. Cover and freeze at least 8 hours.

Carefully remove sides of springform pan. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Garnish each serving with a dollop of whipped cream if desired.

Good to hear from you

Dear Patricia,

I am looking for a recipe for Red Kidney Bean Dip. I first had it in the 1970s at a restaurant called Arthur’s Town House in Lawrence, off of Essex Street. If you can find it I would love to have that recipe.

P.S. I look forward to your article every Friday. Thank you,

Zena, Lawrence

Dear Zena, I checked on the internet and in a 2006 Lawrence directory and it appears that Arthur’s restaurant was replaced by the Townhouse Pub on Newbury Street which is very close to Essex and Jackson streets. The number listed is now out of service. I did locate two different recipes for red kidney bean dip and have mailed them to you. I hope one of them is close to what you remember.

Cordially, Pat


Patricia Altomare invites feedback. Email her at


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