The Unofficial Harry Potter Sweet Shoppe Book, by Dinah Bucholz, features 35 easy to make recipes for candies and other sweets from the pages of the Harry Potter Anthology. Recipes for Crunchy Roaches, Triple Peppermint Humbugs, Sugar Mice, Chocolate Love Potions, Mincemeat Ice Cream and many others are included in this unusual cookbook. In addition, the book is accompanied by decorative glassine candy bags, candy molds, and broom-shaped lollipop sticks.
As a reviewer of this book, I think I should admit at this point that I have not read all of the Harry Potter Books (but I have seen all of the films). As such, I was completely lost as to which recipes to attempt for my review. I ended up choosing the Pumpkin Juice and the Double Strawberry Ice Cream since I planned to let my 2 ½ year old daughter be the “Guinea Pig”/taste tester for my creations. Her bed time is 7:30 so sugar content was an important factor in the selection process.
Anyway, the first recipe that we tried was the Pumpkin Juice. Unfortunately, pumpkins are not currently in season in my neighborhood, so I was forced to use canned pumpkin. The recipe was very simple and called for mixing the pumpkin pulp with apple juice, white grape juice, and pineapple juice. My daughter did not care for this new drink, not on the basis of taste, but because it had a different name than her standard Juicy Juice. I thought it was really good, however. The resulting mixture had a sweet, citrus flavor with a hint of richness from the pumpkin. I would definitely make this one again especially during the autumn months when pumpkins are in season.
The second recipe that we tried was the Double Strawberry Ice Cream. Although this recipe took a little longer to prepare (over 7 hours from start to finish), the steps were pretty simple. I used an ice cream attachment on my Kitchen Aid mixer to mix and freeze the cream. The end result was a fresh, creamy ice cream packed with strawberry flavor. The only thing about this recipe that could be improved was the texture. The ice cream was extremely hard when frozen and had to be thawed for about 15 minutes before serving. I'm not sure if this was a result of the recipe itself or my ice cream maker.
Overall, I give this book 4 out of 5 stars. This is a great book for any die-hard "Pott-Heads" or for any kids that show an interest in cooking. The recipes are simple but based on good, fundamental culinary foundations. The book and candy making accessories will lead to many fun filled hours in the kitchen and will most likely inspire further creative moments.
Double Strawberry Ice Cream Recipe
Pumpkin Juice Recipe