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Archive for Ice Cream/Sorbet/Yogurt

TIP OF THE DAY: Treats For Banana Lovers

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Banana Split

Banana Hot Fudge Sundae

Bunch of Bananas

[1] A grilled banana split: no need for a special banana split dish (photo courtesy Pampered Chef). [2] Another presentation from Women’s Day. Here’s their recipe. [3] Fusion food: a grilled banana hot fudge sundae (photo courtesy Weber). [4] The world’s most popular fruit (photo Nathan Ward | SXC)!

 

Who doesn’t love a banana? It’s the world’s most popular fruit. Some 25 pounds of bananas are consumed per capita each year.

In the U.S., more bananas are consumed than oranges and apples combined! And August 27th is National Banana Lovers Day.

Bananas were introduced to the U.S. in 1880. By 1910, bananas were so popular that cities—which then lacked sanitation systems—had a problem disposing of the banana peels.

People were literally slipping on banana peels that were discarded on sidewalks and streets (a reality appropriated by comedians), leading to injuries. The Boy Scout Handbook recommended picking up banana peels from the street as a Scout’s good deed of the day (source).
 
MORE BANANA TRIVIA

  • Man has been growing bananas for some 10,000 years, since the dawn of agriculture. It’s the oldest cultivated fruit.
  • Bananas don’t grow on trees: The banana plant is actually the world’s largest herb. It’s a cousin to ginger and vanilla.
  • There are more than 1,000 varieties of bananas. The majority grow in Africa and Asia: 600 varieties in India alone.
  • The American supermarket banana is a variety called the Cavendish. It’s a more bland banana, but it travels well.
  • Bananas float in water (so do apples)!
  •  
    WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE BANANA RECIPE?

    Banana Bread? Banana Cream Pie? Banana Daiquiri? Banana French Toast? Banana Ice Cream? Banana Pudding? Peanut Butter and Bananas?

    We say YES! to all, but today are focusing on two: the kid favorite Banana Split and the over-21 Bananas Foster.
     
    BANANA SPLIT HISTORY

    Two towns in the U.S. lay claim as the home of the banana split.

  • In 1904 in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, David Strickler, a 23-year-old druggist’s apprentice at Tassel Pharmacy is said to have created the first banana split sundae for the local college crowd.
  • In 1907 in Wilmington, Ohio, restaurateur Ernest R. Hazard held a dessert contest among his employees at The Café. One came up with a sundae of sliced banana topped with three scoops of ice cream, chocolate syrup, strawberry jam, pineapple bits, chopped nuts, whipped cream and cherries.
  •  
    Fortunately for the rest of us, the concept spread nationwide, affording all of us the joy of a Banana Split.

    RECIPE: GRILLED BANANA SUNDAE

    Banana splits are easy to make: Split a ripe banana vertically, place it in a long dish, top with three scoops of ice cream (traditionally vanilla, chocolate and strawberry) and toppings of choice. (You can get Anchor Hocking banana split dishes for about $2 each.)

    Here’s a twist: a grilled banana sundae, a cross between the classic and Bananas Foster. In the latter, bananas are caramelized in butter with brown sugar and cinnamon, then topped with dark rum and flambéed, with the bananas and the flaming sauce served over vanilla ice cream.

    We’ve included a Bananas Foster recipe below. The recipes are very similar, except that for Bananas Foster, the bananas are sautéed in butter instead of grilled; and alcohol is added to the caramel sauce. The banana is typically sliced in half lengthwise and crosswise.

    Ingredients For 4 Servings

  • 2 firm, ripe bananas
  • 2 tablespoons firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 cups vanilla ice cream
  • 1/4 cup fudge sauce
  • 1/4 cup toasted slivered almonds
  •  
    Preparation

    1. PREHEAT a grill pan over medium heat for 5 minutes.

    2. CUT the bananas in half lengthwise and crosswise for a total of 4 pieces each. Combine the brown sugar and cinnamon in shallow dish. Gently coat the bananas with the sugar mixture.

    3. SPRAY the grill pan lightly with vegetable oil and add the banana pieces, cut sides down. Grill for 2-3 minutes per side or until grill marks appear.

    4. SERVE warm with ice cream, ice cream topping and almonds.
     

     

    RECIPE: BANANAS FOSTER

    The original Bananas Foster recipe was created in 1951 by Paul Blangé (1900 to 1977), the Executive Chef at Brennan’s in New Orleans. The dish of sautéed bananas, flambéed and topped with ice cream, was named in honor of Richard Foster, a regular customer and friend of restaurant owner Owen Brennan Sr.

    Note that while both the recipes above and the original Bananas Foster cut the bananas into oblong pieces (see photo above), we prefer the round slices of banana, about 3/4-inch thick.

    While igniting the dish tableside is dramatic both at a restaurant and at home, it isn’t necessary.

    Ingredients For 4 Servings

  • 4 firm, ripe bananas
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 pint vanilla ice cream
  • 1/4 cup banana liqueur
  • 1/2 cup dark rum
  • Optional garnishes: toasted chopped pecans, grated orange zest
  •  
    Preparation

    1. CUT the bananas in half lengthwise and crosswise for a total of 4 pieces each (alternative: cut 3/4″ rounds; you’ll have more than 4 pieces).

    2. MELT the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the brown sugar and cinnamon and cook, stirring until the sugar dissolves (about 2 minutes—this creates a caramel sauce). Add the bananas and cook on both sides until they begin to soften and brown (about 3 minutes).

    3. ADD the banana liqueur and stir to blend into the caramel sauce. If you want to flambé, follow the instructions below. However, the drama of the flambé works only if the dish is prepared tableside. Otherwise, the drama is lost in the kitchen (the flame extinguishes quickly).

    4. LIFT the bananas carefully from the pan and top the four dishes of ice cream; then spoon the sauce over the ice cream and bananas and serve immediately.
     
    TIPS ON HOW TO FLAMBÉ

  • Liquors and liqueurs that are 80-109 proof are best to ignite. Don’t use a higher proof; it is highly flammable.
  • The liquor must be warmed to 130°F before adding to the pan. Higher temperatures will burn off the alcohol, and it won’t ignite.
  • Always remove the pan from the heat source before adding the liquor to avoid burning yourself.
  • Vigorously shaking the pan usually extinguishes the flame, but keep a pot lid nearby in case you need to smother the flames. The alcohol vapor generally burns off by itself in a matter of seconds.
  •  
    MORE

  • Read these tips
  • Watch this video
  •  

    Bananas Foster

    Bananas Foster

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    [1] Bananas Foster at the Bonefish Grill, looking like a more complex Banana Split. [2] It’s harder to sauté a lengthwise half of banana without breaking it. Hence, the suggestion of slicing lengthwise and crosswise (photo Fotolia). [3] This recipe from Taste Of Home slices the bananas into coin shapes (a.k.a. chunks), easier to salute.

     
    READY FOR A DRINK?

    Relax with a Banana Colada.

      

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    TIP OF THE DAY: Savory Ice Cream

    We thought about labeling this article Food Fun instead of a Tip Of The Day. After all, savory ice cream isn’t everyday fare.

    Then, we remembered that our purpose is to expand your food horizons (and impress your guests), so here goes.
     
    SAVORY ICE CREAM

    Savory ice cream flavored with cheese and/or herbs—no sugar or just a small amount—is not a new concept.

    We published a large collection of cheese ice cream recipes 11 years ago, but the savory recipes date to way before that.

    You can find recipes for formaggio gelato (cheese ice cream) and formaggio di parmigiano gelato (Parmesan ice cream) in older Italian cookbooks.

    It replaced the cheese course at the end of summer lunches, or was cut into slices and served as a first course with ham and hard-boiled eggs.

    We have several recipes, below; but the basic Italian recipe is simple:

    1. GRATE one pound of Grana Padano or Parmigiano Reggiano (or crumble Gorgonzola; combine with one quart of heavy cream and a pinch of salt and pepper.

    2. STIR over a moderate flame until the mixture becomes creamy. This infuses the cream with Parmesan flavor.

    3. REMOVE from the heat, cool, strain and process in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s directions. If you don’t have an ice cream maker, you can freeze the mixture in a container and stir at regular intervals (for a less creamy texture).
     
    HOW TO SERVE SAVORY ICE CREAM

    Use your imagination! For starters:

  • Baked potato, instead of sour cream
  • Cheese course, single or trio scoops—Parmesan, Cheddar and Stilton, for example
  • Chilled soups, savory like gazpacho or sweet like fruit soup
  • Compound butter substitute: for example, a small scoop of blue cheese ice cream on a hot steak, or a scoop of herb ice cream on grilled fish
  • Cone or taco shell
  • Cream puffs or éclairs: substitute the vanilla ice cream for blue cheese or Parmesan
  • Dairy on dairy: with cottage cheese or yogurt
  • Ice cream sandwich with tuilles or waffles
  • Fruit or nut pies
  • Salad: green herb salad or fruit salad
  • Shortcake: on a biscuit with fresh berries
  • Parfait with melon and prosciutto
  •  
    Optional Garnishes

  • Dried fruit: dates, figs or others depending on flavor
  • Fresh fruit: diced apples with cheddar ice cream, berries with goat cheese ice cream, etc.
  • Fresh herbs: basil sprig, herb blossoms, lavender, rosemary sprig, sage leaves, tarragon or thyme sprig
  • Grape tomato, olive or other wee vegetable
  • Nuts
  •  
    RECIPE #1: QUICK PARMESAN ICE CREAM BALLS

    This recipe is much simpler to make. Use it with cold vegetable soups and the other serving suggestions above.

       

    Rosemary Ice Cream

    Cheddar Ice Cream

    Savory Ice Cream Sandwich

    Dill Ice Cream

    [1] Rosemary ice cream on an herb salad (photo courtesy Rosetta Restaurant | Mexico City. [2] Cheddar ice cream on an apple crumble (photo courtesy Hannah Kaminsky | Bittersweet Blog). [3] Avocado ice cream sandwiched by 34 Degrees crisps (photo courtesy Food Flirt) [4] Dill ice cream cone with smoked salmon topping (here’s the recipe from Cup Of Sugar Pinch Of Salt.

     
    We make a similarly simple recipe of blender gazpacho: tomatoes, basil and olive oil with optional chopped bell peppers, cucumbers and onions (it depends on how much time or desire we have for chopping). Serve it in a Martini glass or large wine goblet, topped with a small scoop of ice cream.

    Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup whipping cream
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • Fresh herbs for garnish
  •  
    Preparation

    1. HEAT the cream in a saucepan over medium heat; bring to a simmer.

    2. STIR in the Parmesan cheese and continue stir until the cheese is melted. Stir in a dash of fresh ground pepper and remove to a small bowl to cool. When cool…

    3. PLACE the mixture in a small freezer-proof bowl or plastic container. Cover the container and place it in the freezer for 1-2 hours.

    4. SCOOP little balls of the frozen Parmesan ice cream, using a melon baller or a teaspoon. Place a ball of into each bowl of soup just before serving. Garnish with a sprig of fresh herb.

     

    Blue Cheese Ice Cream

    Goat Cheese Ice Cream

    Rosemary Ice Cream

    [1] Blue cheese ice cream (photo courtesy Yummly). [2] Goat cheese ice cream (photo courtesy Charlie Trotter). [3] Rosemary olive oil ice cream (here’s the recipe from Local Food Rocks.

      CHEESE ICE CREAM RECIPES

  • Parmesan Ice Cream from Ferran Adrià
  • Blue Cheese Ice Cream from Point Reyes Farmstead
  • Cheddar Ice Cream
  • Goat Cheese Ice Cream from Charlie Trotter
  •  
    You can turn any of these recipes into herb ice cream, by substituting fresh herbs for the cheese. Our favorites are basil and rosemary; there’s a recipe right below.
     
    Bonus

  • Sweet Cream Cheese Ice Cream for dessert: the best “cheesecake” ice cream.
  •  
    RECIPE #2: ROSEMARY ICE CREAM

    This recipe is sweetened, but you can reduce the honey to 1/8 or 1/4 of a cup for a more savory ice cream, or add just a tablespoon. You can also substitute basil. If you’d like the herb flavor to be stronger, use more next time.

    You can make this recipe up to four days in advance.
     
    Ingredients For 1.25 Quarts

  • 2 cups whipping [heavy] cream
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2/3 cup honey
  • 1 6-inch-long fresh rosemary sprig
  • 5 large egg yolks
  • Large pinch of fine sea salt
  •  
    Preparation

    1. COMBINE the cream, milk, honey and rosemary in large saucepan. Stir over medium heat until small bubbles form around edges of pan. Remove from the heat; cover and let steep 30 minutes.

    2. DISCARD the rosemary and put the pan back on the stove. Bring the contents to a simmer, then remove from the heat.

    3. WHISK the egg yolks and salt in a medium bowl. Gradually add the hot cream mixture, whisking until thoroughly combined. (The eggs and cream make this a custard, the style known as French ice cream. See the different types of ice cream.)

    4. RETURN the custard to the saucepan. Stir over medium-low heat until the custard thickens slightly and coats back of spoon. This should take 4 to 5 minutes and the mixture should register 165°F to 170°F on a thermometer. Do not boil!

    5. STRAIN the mixture into a medium bowl. Set the bowl into a larger bowl containing a slurry of ice and water. Allow to cool, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

    6. REMOVE the custard bowl from the slurry. Cover it with plastic wrap and chill for at least 4 hours.

    7. TRANSFER the custard to an ice cream maker and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Transfer the churned ice cream to a container. Cover and freeze until firm, at least 4 hours.

     
    THE HISTORY OF ICE CREAM

    Fruit ices are thousands of years old, dating back to ancient China. But gelato, the first type of ice cream, is comparatively recent.

    The original concept, a sherbet-like concoction, came from Northern China in the more than 4,000 years ago, before the 2nd century B.C.E. Snow and saltpeter in a container served as an ancient ice cream maker to freeze ingredients, the snow mixed with fruit juices, honey and aromatic spices.

    A modern form of it still exists, called snow cream. You can make it with a fresh batch of snow: Here’s the recipe.
     
    Fruit Snow Travels West

    Through trade routes, the frozen dessert recipe was introduced to Persia—about 2,500 years ago. The Persians called the frozen concoction sharbat, “fruit ice” in Arabic. We know it as sherbet, sorbet or sorbetto.

    Alexander the Great, who battled the Persians for 10 years before finally toppling the Persian Empire in 330 B.C.E., “discovered” the fruit ices and returned to Greece with the knowledge. Within three centuries, Emperor Nero was serving fruit juices mixed with honey and snow at his banquets, dispatching the fastest runners to the mountaintops to bring back the snow.
     
    On To Europe

    Fruit ice arrived in Europe with the Arab invasions of Sicily in the fifth century. Italian granita was born, flavored with a wide range of fruits including citrus. Coffee ice was also made.

    It took until the late 1500’s in Florence, for fruit ice to be adapted to gelato. The original ice cream, gelato was (and is) made with cream and eggs. This combination enables a more intense showcasing of the fruits, nuts and other flavors. (The key differences between gelato and ice cream are less cream/more milk and less air [overrun].)

    The invention is credited to Bernardo Buontalenti, a multi-talented genius born Bernardo Delle Girandole (c. 1531 to 1608). Buontalenti, his professional name, means great talent. He was an architect, theatrical designer, military engineer and artist.

    It is believed that he created gelato for a Medici banquet.

    Buontalenti, who spent his life in the employ of the Medici family, was, among other things, the impresario of the fabulous Medici banquets. While no historical record exists that names Buontalenti as the creator, he is a likely candidate.

    Gelato spread from Italy to the rest of Europe. This is attributed to another Italian, Catarina de’ Medici, who married the future King Henri II of France. (She was only 14 when she married; no wonder she liked ice cream).

    Here’s the full history of ice cream, to modern times.

      

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    TIP OF THE DAY: Easy Ice Cream & Berries Shortcake

    Ice Cream Shortcake is an easy dessert, simply combining berry ice cream, fresh berries on refrigerator biscuits. It’s easier to put together than an ice cream cake, and even easier than conventional shortcake since you don’t have to whip the cream.

    We adapted this recipe from the Chefs Collaborative Cookbook.

  • If you prefer, you can use only one biscuit half per person; or spread the usually plain top biscuit half with jam.
  • Use whichever berries you prefer, or a mixture of blackberries, blueberries, raspberries and/or strawberries.
  •  
    Because today is National Raspberries & Cream Day, we’re making our shortcake with raspberries.
     
    RECIPE: EASY BERRY SHORTCAKE RECIPE

    Ingredients

  • Refrigerator buttermilk biscuits
  • Ice cream of choice (suggested: strawberry, other berry or vanilla)
  • Fresh berries
  • Optional: berry jam or preserves
  • Optional garnish: mint sprig, rosemary sprig, or other decorative herb you have on hand
  •  
    Preparation

    1. BAKE the biscuits and let cool.

    2. SPLIT the biscuits and spread the bottom half with the optional jam. If using the top biscuit half, spread with jam as desired.

    3. TOP with a scoop of ice cream and sprinkle with berries. Place the top biscuit half on the plate (jam side up if using, otherwise top side up) and serve.

    CHEFS COLLABORATIVE COOKBOOK

     

    rhubarb-ice-cream-shortcake-TheChefsCollaborativeCookbook-230

    The-Chefs-Collaborative-Cookbook-230

    How easy is this? Refrigerator biscuits + ice cream + berries = an impressive dessert. Photos courtesy The Chef’s Collaborative.

     
    More than 20 years ago, some of the most revered chefs in the world—including John Ash, Rick Bayless, Susan Feniger, Nobu Matsuhita, Nora Pouillon, Michael Romano and Alice Waters—looked at the way Americans were eating and decided that they had to help change it.

  • They had watched while processed foods replaced fresh food in our supermarkets.
  • They saw family farms disappear and huge agribusiness corporations take over.
  • They worried about obesity in children and adults, and the associated illnesses.
  • And they realized that Americans were losing the joy of cooking and eating fresh food.
  •  
    In 1993, these visionary chefs founded Chefs Collaborative and vowed to use their influence to educate us, the public, about a better way to nourish ourselves that is also better for the planet.

    Their stated goal: Support small farms, healthy food and sustainable agriculture for everyone. They’ve been a significant force in the food revolution that’s improved the way Americans eat.

    Chefs Collaborative members contributed more than 115 recipes to creating a cookbook: recipes that can be made by the home cook.

    Each section (fruits, meats, vegetables, etc.) also provides information about the principles of sustainability around the ingredient, with information provided farmers, artisan producers, breeders, environmentalists, and activists.

    Get your copy of The Chefs Collaborative Cookbook: Local, Sustainable, Delicious Recipes from America’s Great Chefs.

    It’s also a great gift for anyone interested in these issues.

      

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    RECIPE: 12+ Different Types Of Ice Cream Sandwiches

    Cookie Dough Ice Cream Sandwich

    Ice Cream Sandwich Sundae

    Donut Ice Cream Sandwiches

    Palmier Ice Cream Sandwich

    Cookie Dough ice cream sandwiches. Be still our foolish hearts (photo courtesy McCormick). [2] An ice cream sandwich sundae (photo courtesy Tony Roma’s). [3] Ice cream sandwich on a donut (photo courtesy Elegant Affairs Caterers). [4] Ice cream sandwich on French palmier cookies (photo courtesy Sugar Bowl Bakery).

     

    Time to celebrate: August 2nd is National Ice Cream Sandwich Day.

    ICE CREAM SANDWICH HISTORY

    According to an article in the July 1900 issue of The New York Herald Tribune, the ice cream sandwich was created in 1899 by a pushcart peddler in the Bowery area of the Lower East Side.

    The first ice cream sandwiches were a slice of vanilla ice cream pressed between two thin graham wafers. The slice was cut from a larger slab.

    In July 1900, The New York Tribune published an article about the pushcart vendor who was selling the sandwiches.

  • The vendor was so busy pressing the sandwiches into a tin mold (to order) that he didn’t have time to make change. Customers had to pay the exact price, one cent.
  • Shortly thereafter, the treats made it to pushcarts on the beach at Atlantic City.
  •  
    MODERN ICE CREAM SANDWICHES

    The modern version with the rectangular chocolate wafers was created in 1945 by Jerry Newberg, an ice cream vendor at Forbes Field in Pittsburgh; although Wikipedia gives credit to partners Jack Delaney, Tim Jones, John Defilippis and Sam West whom it says originally created and patented the chocolate wafer sandwich in 1963. The thin wafers gain moisture in the freezer, which gives them a cake-like quality.

    The next step, the Chipwich, was ice cream sandwiched between chocolate chip cookies. It was created in 1981 by Richard LaMotta of New York City and sold from a pushcart like the Bowery originals (the brand was subsequently bought by Dreyer’s, and is now owned by Retrobrands USA).

    Today the ice cream sandwich is enjoyed worldwide, in forms that include the Vietnamese bánh mì kep kem, a baguette stuffed with scoops of ice cream topped with crushed peanuts, instead of conventional sandwich fixings; to Iranian “bread ice cream” which sandwiches rose water, saffron, or vanilla ice cream between thin, round, crunchy wafers.

    In Scotland, vanilla ice cream sandwiched is between one wafer and one block of chocolate-covered nougat (a “single nougat”) or between two blocks of nougat (a “double nougat”).

    We’ve seen macaron ice cream sandwiches and churro ice cream sandwiches. What would you like for your perfect ice cream sandwich?
     
    MODERN ICE CREAM SANDWICH RECIPES

    Since the Chipwich, making ice cream sandwiches other cookies and bars (blondies, brownies, oatmeal, etc.) have come to the fore. But creativity doesn’t stop there. Here are other delicious variations of ice cream sandwich:

  • Blueberry Ice Cream Sandwiches On Blueberry Pound Cake
  • Brioche Or King’s Hawaiian Ice Cream Sandwiches
  • Brownie Ice Cream Sandwiches
  • Cookie Dough Ice Cream Sandwich
  • Crunchy Strawberry Ice Cream Sandwiches
  • Donut, Rice Krispie Treat & Waffle Ice Cream Sandwiches
  • Frozen Cheesecake “Ice Cream” Sandwiches
  • Granola Ice Cream Sandwiches
  • Ice Cream Sandwich Sundaes
  • Popcorn Ball Ice Cream Sandwiches
  • Strawberry Shortcake Ice Cream Sandwiches
  •  

    We celebrated today with ice cream sandwiches on black and white cookies!
     
      

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    TOP PICK OF THE WEEK: Choctál’s Singe Origin Ice Cream

    When we first reviewed Choctál ice cream in 2007, it was a unique experience. It still is.

    The California company pioneered single origin ice cream in the two most popular flavors, chocolate and vanilla. The line—four single origin chocolate ice creams and four single origin vanillas—demonstrate how the flavor varies, based on the origin of the cacao and vanilla beans.

    This means you can have one heck of an ice cream tasting for National Ice Cream Month (July).

    It’s a memorable experience, especially for people who enjoy discerning the different flavor profiles between one origin and another in chocolate bars, olive oils, sea salts, wine grapes and so forth. The flavors of these agricultural products and others are greatly affected by their growing environment (terroir).

    A BRIEF HISTORY OF CHOCOLATE

    In the beginning—some 4,000 years ago—there was ice cream. Here’s the history of ice cream.

    Fast-forward ahead a few thousand years—beyond the labor-intensive ice cream made by servants of the wealthy in pre-electricity Renaissance days, beyond the invention of the ice cream churn in 1851, beyond the soda fountains at neighborhood drug scores, which engendered the ice cream soda along with scooped ice cream to eat at the fountain or to take home.

    Along with home refrigerators, supermarket brands arrived in the 1950s. Many used cheaper ingredients and whipped more air into then ice cream (known as overrun) to keep gallon prices low. This engendered a USDA classification system. “Economy,” “regular” and “premium” ice creams were defined by butterfat content and overrun.

    Häagen-Daz arrived in the 1970s with even higher butterfat and lower overrun than premium ice cream, inaugurating the superpremium category. With butterfat greater than 14% (some brands have 18% and more), overrun as low as 20% and complex flavors in addition to the basic ones), there’s no rung higher to go on the classification scale—by government standards, at least.

    Some companies—including Choctál—have labeled their ice cream “ultrapremium,” but this is marketing rather than an official government standard.

    And now, there’s single origin ice cream.

    WHAT IS “SINGLE-ORIGIN?”

    The term is not currently regulated in the U.S., but single origin can refer either to a single region or at the micro level, to a single farm or estate within that region.

    It is based on the agricultural concept of terroir (tur-WAH), a French term that is the basis for its the A.O.C. system (Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée, or controlled designation of origin), created in the 1950s.

    Choctal Single Origin Chocolate Ice Cream

    Choctal Single Origin Ice Cream

    Choctal Single Origin Vanilla Ice Cream

    [1] A pint of Kalimantan chocolate, with beans from Borneo. [2] The four origins of chocolate and vanilla may look the same, but the tastes are noticeably different. [3] A pint of vanilla made with beans from Madagascar, the classic raised to the heights by Choctál (photos courtesy Choctál).

    These environmental characteristics gives agricultural products their character. A.O.C. and related terms like Italy’s P.D.O. (Denominazione di Origine Protetta, or Protected Designation of Origin.) recognize that different plots of land produce different flavors from the same rootstock. In the 1990s, the European Union created a new system to provide a uniform labeling protocol: Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) and Protected Geographical Indication (PGI).What IS “TERROIR?”Terroir, pronounced tur-WAH is a French agricultural term that is the basis of the French A.O.C. (Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée) system. It refers to the unique components of the place (environment) where an agricultural product is grown.

    Each specific habitat (plot of land) has unique set of environmental factors that affect a crop’s qualities, down to nuances of aroma, flavor and texture. They include the climate and microclimate, weather (the season’s growing conditions), elevation height and slant of the land), proximity to a body of water, slant of the land, soil type and amount of direct sunlight.

    This means that the same rootstock that is grown in different locations produces different flavors.

    Not only will the product taste and smell somewhat different (Sauvignon Blanc can have grass or grapefruit aroma and flavor notes—or neither—depending on their terroir), but intermediate products also create a difference.

    For example, grass with more clover, wild herbs, and so forth produces a delicate difference in an animal’s milk, and thus in artisan cheese.

    Note that processing will also affect the flavor. Neighboring wine makers, for example, can use different techniques to create wines that highlight their personal flavor preferences.

     

    Choctal Single Origin Ice Cream

    Choctal Single Origin Ice Cream Cones

    Choctàl pints and cones (photos courtesy Choctàl).

    THE CHOCTÀL SINGLE ORIGIN ICE CREAMS

    Choctàl Single Origin Chocolate Ice Cream

    • Costa Rican cacao is distinguished by sweet notes of coffee and a hint of butterscotch.
    • Ghana cacao, from the coast of West Africa, has a fudge, milk chocolate character.
    • Kalimantan cacao, from the island of Borneo in the South China Sea, produces intense cacao beans with a slight hint of caramel.
    • Dominican cacao, from the Dominican Republic on the Caribbean island of Hispaniola, has a natural dark chocolate flavor profile with notes of clove and nutmeg.

    Choctàl Single Origin Vanilla Ice Cream

    • Indonesian vanilla is full-bodied, blending the creamy sweetness of classic bourbon (Madagascan) vanilla with a woody floral note.
    • Madagascar vanilla, from the island off the eastern coast of Africa, has been the world standard in vanilla for centuries, smooth and buttery. In the hands of Choctal, it may be the best vanilla ice cream you’ll ever taste.
    • Mexican vanilla has a natural touch of cinnamon. Choctàl adds more cinnamon. It obscures the single origin flavor, but makes a delicious cinnamon-vanilla ice cream.
    • Papua New Guinea vanilla has fruity, floral notes of cherry that linger on the palate during a long, lush finish.

    The line is certified kosher by OU.

    While the main experience is to taste and compared the different origins to each other, they are also splendid in everything from à la mode to floats.

    WHERE TO FIND CHOCTÁL ICE CREAMHere’s a store locator to find the nearest pint of Choctàl.You can also order pints and gift cards on the Choctàl website.

     

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