If you take them right out of the freezer, small, pint-sized containers of ice cream are often too hard to scoop. Instead, place the pint on its side on a cutting board and cut off slices, right through the cardboard, with a serrated knife. Peel the cardboard off the slides and serve, or cut the disks into interesting shapes using cookie cutters.
If you don’t eat ice cream right away it can lose its fresh taste and form ice crystals on the surface as it sits in the freezer. So after you take a scoop, cover the portion remaining in the carton with plastic wrap. Press the wrap flush against the surface of the ice cream, then put the top back on and put the carton back in the freezer.
There’s nothing worse than a sugar cone that leaks from the bottom. To prevent this and to add an extra sweet twist, dip the bottom of the cone (at least 1/2 inch) into the melted chocolate of your choice (dark, milk, or white). Then place the cone upside down on a cooling rack until the chocolate sets. The sweet seal provides extra insurance against drips.
Like these? See more quick tips at Cook's Illustrated.