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Pomegranate Champagne Sorbetto

4 Oct

“Your lips are like a scarlet thread, and your mouth is lovely. Your cheeks are like halves of a pomegranate behind your veil.” ~ Song of Solomon

Dig in!

Ok let me be clear about one thing. This quote is rather erotic – and maybe not totally appropriate for an ice cream blog, but in the spirit of researching the biblical significance of the pomegranate, this seemed apropos. I should also note that if The Husband recited these lines to me as some sort of a love poem, I’d vomit. Let me be clear, if my cheeks were like halves of a pomegranate I’d probably look like a chipmunk, or maybe like I just had my wisdom teeth removed. That ‘aint no compliment. Oh, and I don’t want to be told that my mouth is lovely. That’s like saying I’m really good at eating. Gee, thanks. Solomon, I think you need to try a little harder with your pick up lines. These just stink.

This recipe is the second in a series of Jewish New Year sorbet posts. I’ve decided to use fruits that are quintessentially Jewish – or that are prominently featured this time of year. Enter the pomegranate. This beautiful fruit, though a big fat pain in the tuchas to peel, is rather significant in Judaism.

Adding the champagne to the simple syrup

First, legend has it (though I cannot personally confirm because I do not have the time to sit there and peel and count the seeds) that the pomegranate has 613 seeds. This number is of great significance in Judaism as it corresponds to the number of mitzvot, or commandments in the Bible. Second, the pomegranate is one of the seven original species of fruits and grains enumerated in the Bible. In fact, upon entering the Land of Israel, the Israelite scouts brought Moses a pomegranate, to show that the promised land was fertile. This, my friends, is precisely why we eat the pomegranate on the new year (that and it’s harvesting season is September – December, so eco-conscious foodies would approve!).

And as for the champagne – well, let’s be honest, there really isn’t much of a significance, other than this new year is cause for celebration, so let’s pop open a bottle of bubbly. You should know that when we opened it, The Husband did a piss poor job because the champagne literally exploded everywhere – including all over this recipe. Good thing enough remained to make this sorbetto.

So, in the spirit of the new year we bless one another with prosperity and fertility, health and happiness. May your good deeds and kindness be as numerous as the pomegranate seeds. Here’s to a sweet new year.

The sorbetto with it's main ingredient, POM

Pomegranate Champagne Sorbetto

From Ciao Bella

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups pomegranate juice

1 cup champagne, chilled

Simple Syrup (1 cup water, 1 cup sugar

1/4 tsp fresh lemon juice (I omitted this)

Method

Prepare the simple syrup by combining the water and sugar in a medium saucepan. Place over medium-high  heat and bring to a boil, whisking often to dissolve the sugar. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 4 minutes, while continuing to whisk until all the sugar is dissolved. Remove from the heat and let cool, then transfer to a bowl or container, cover, and refrigerate until cold, at least 1 hour.

In a large bowl whisk together the pomegranate juice, champagne, simple syrup and lemon juice (if you use it). Pour the mixture into the container of an ice cream machine and churn according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Transfer to an airtight container and freeze for at least 2 hours before serving. When ready to eat, drizzle with pomegranate seeds and enjoy.

Pomegranate Champagne Sorbetto

Cheers!

Note: Because this recipe involves alcohol, you’ll notice that even after 20 minutes (the usual churning time) it does not fully freeze. It’s going to be slightly more liquid than other sorbets, so just keep in the freezer until right before you serve.

The Verdict: Wow! The first bite is all champagne. The second bite is all pomegranate. The third – a perfect mixture of the two. I must admit, even though I can appreciate how yummy this flavor is, it is not one of my favorite concoctions – partially because I don’t like champagne, and partially because I was so obsessed with the apple sorbet that I didn’t have any room in my heart for another flavor. But apparently my entire family (yes, all 30 of them who tasted it) actually preferred the Pomegranate Champagne Sorbetto. So, I was outvoted. They raved about this flavor. In fact, they loved it so much that I they may have successfully changed my mind. I’ve been converted. This flavor is good!

Pure deliciousness! Three cheers for the sorbetto

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Apple Sorbet

28 Sep

Shanah Tovah U’Metukah

Have a good and sweet year

Apple Sorbet

Please forgive me, but this is going to be a rather reflective post. In honor of the Jewish New Year, which begins on sundown Wednesday evening, I am making a trio of sorbets, each one bringing forth a new flavor and blessing for the new year. This recipe, apple sorbet, carries quite a bit of meaning.

Ever since I was a little girl, my parents used to say that no matter what – the most important thing is that we have our health, and that we have each other. I never fully understood those words – they resonated, sure, I knew that it was very important to have family, but as a kid, you take good health for granted. As an adult, working for Project Sunshine I see the impact of health, both good and bad, on families across the country. Every day I am humbled by the generosity, strong spirits, and resiliency of these brave, young patients. In the face of such challenges, they smile, they laugh, and quite honestly, they elicit from me such joy and happiness that I am truly in awe.

Macintosh Apples. Good stuff.

It’s times like these that I am reminded of how blessed I am to have my health – and as my mom always said – to have “each other”. I am truly grateful for each family member and each friend that is part of my life. I can only wish that each one of you are blessed with good health, happiness and lots of sweetness as we embark on this new year together.

And now, a bit about the sorbet. Apples and honey are the quintessential combination during the Jewish New Year. There are many interpretations about the combination of apple and honey – and at the most rudimentary level – they represent the sweetness with which we should all be blessed each year. But on a deeper level, the apple is a rather famous fruit in our culture.  Midrash, or biblical stories, teach that the apple tree puts forth the nub of its fruit even before the leaves that will surround and protect the little fruit  are fully sprouting. This is a beautiful metaphor. Much like the apple leaves protect the fruit until it is truly ready to enter the world, so too do our family and friends protect us from the outside world until we are truly ready to venture into it ourselves. As each of one you embarks on a new journeys this year, I wish you the necessary shelter and support until you are ready to face those challenges, be they good or bad, and the strength to carry you forward to achieve each and every goal along the way.

Look at that beautiful star created by the apple seeds

That my friends, is why I’ve decided to make an apple sorbet. May your homes be filled with sweetness in the coming year. Here’s to good health and happiness.

Apple Sorbet

Adapted from David Lebovitz

Ingredients

3 Macintosh Apples

1 Gala Apple

2 cups Riesling wine

2/3 cup sugar

Honey (optional – but just enough to drizzle on top of your scoop)

Apples + Riesling = Pure Goodness

Method

Brace yourselves, this is very simple.

Core and seed the apples. Cut into 1 inch pieces. (Do not peel, the skin adds great flavor and color).

Put the apple pieces and 2 cups of Riesling into pot. Cover and let boil. Once it’s boiling, reduce to a simmer for 15-18 minutes. Stir a few times so that the apples cook evenly.

Straining the apples and syrup created from boiling the apples and riesling

Remove from the stovetop and pour the liquid into a heat-proof bowl. You’ll notice that a lot of apple pulp and skins will remain, and it looks a bit like apple sauce. Put the remaining chunky mixture into a blender (or you can use an immersion blender or food processor) and puree. Whisk the thicker, apple-sauce type puree into the liquid mixture. While it’s still hot, pour in the sugar and whisk until it dissolves. Cool completely before refrigerating for at least 2 hours.

Once chilled, pour the mixture into the bowl of an ice cream maker and churn according to the manufacturer’s instructions (approximately 20 minutes). Transfer to a freezer safe container and freeze for 2 hours before serving. When ready to eat, scoop into a bowl, drizzle with a little bit of honey (optional) and enjoy!

Here's to a sweet new year. Dig in!

The Verdict: While I don’t have input yet from the official taste-testers (my entire extended family!) I do know that this was one of the best sorbets I have personally tasted. It was so creamy you would think it was ice cream, and interestingly enough, the wine cooked off leaving behind a sweet, flavorful taste. In fact, the wine actually augmented the flavor of the fruit – it was just delightful and refreshing. I’m definitely going to make this again!

Happy New Year. Dig in!

Watermelon Bombe

16 Aug

“Without an open minded mind, you can never be a great success.” ~ Martha Stewart

The lovely slices of the watermelon bombe

A friend recently sent me a slideshow with 60 different frozen treat recipes created by none other than Martha Stewart. “60 days of inspiration”,  read her note. “Get cracking!”  is what went through my mind! Well let me tell you, I scrolled through each of those beautiful creations and my friend was right…I’ve been inspired. So, with an open mind, I set out to make this wonderful watermelon treat.

And now the moment you’ve all been waiting for… the great reveal…

The W-A-T-E-R-M-E-L-O-N B-O-M-B-E!

Was it worth it? No

Will I do it again? No (Actually, maybe yes, but only to perfect the recipe)

Was this Watermelon Bombe a bomb? Emphatic Yes!

Ok. That’s a lot of ranting. Let me qualify the above statements.

In actuality this recipe was beautiful. It worked (even with substantive adaptations) just like Martha said it would. And even though I am a really harsh critic, when I sliced the “watermelon” a very pure, child-like smirk came over my fact. I did it! I have to admit, I was very proud of good ‘ole 365scoops.

Does anyone want a half watermelon?

But there were 2 major hiccups that I couldn’t get over. First, the watermelon sorbet was slightly icy (as any high-water content fruit sorbet would be) and so the watermelon bombe didn’t cut into perfect slices; it crumbled a bit instead. [No one seemed to notice but me, of course.]  Second, the white part of the rind (is it the pith?) and the actual rind bled together, and while most people didn’t even notice, I did because I spent three days preparing this beast of a dish and wanted it to go smoothly. So, instead of perfect watermelon slices as depicted in dear Martha’s photos, mine was a little bit more blended and crumbly than I would have liked. (See photos for proof!)

I consider myself really good at following directions, and generally my recipe creations look quite similar to the photo, but this one strayed a bit. Shame. I’m going to blame the fact that Martha’s food photographers probably photoshopped the heck out of her watermelon bombe. That and the fact that Martha is the Queen of Crafts so hers probably just looked better than mine. Plain and simple.

I digress…

A big fat slice of "watermelon"

This watermelon bombe was truly a labor of love. Though it took a bit of time [read: 3 days*] to make, assemble, and serve, it was a really fun project. And though I was complaining a bit  incessantly, the finished product was actually beautiful. So there.

*This project took 3 days because I only have one bowl for my ice cream maker, and it takes 18-24 hours for the bowl to freeze, so I could only make 1 flavor a day for three days. Hence the long journey to a grand watermelon bombe.

The Watermelon Bombe

Sorbet and ice cream recipes adapted from David Lebovitz, The Vegan Scoop and Bruce Weinstein. 

Ingredients

Step 1: Fill with lime sorbet

1 quart lime sorbet

1 quart vegan vanilla bean ice cream

1 quart watermelon sorbetto

Method

Line a 7″ pyrex or metal mixing bowl with saran wrap.

Immediately after churning the lime sorbet, or after thawing store-bought sorbet (gasp!) for 10 mins, scoop and spread the lime sorbet into an even layer on the interior of the bowl to create the green watermelon rind.  You will use the entire quart of sorbet. Cover, move to the freezer and let harden for at least 1 hour.

Step 2: Fill with an even layer of vegan vanilla bean ice cream

Repeat the above with the vegan vanilla bean ice cream. Spread an even layer of the ice cream on top of the lime sorbet to create the watermelon pith (the white part!). There will be a few scoops of ice cream left over. Cover, move to the freezer and let harden for at least 1 hour or overnight.

To finish the watermelon, scoop the watermelon sorbetto into the bowl, making sure to pack it tightly and evenly. Flatten the top and return to the freezer to harden. There will be leftover watermelon sorbetto.

Before serving, soak the bowl in a large bowl of hot water for approximately 20 seconds. Remove the cover, place face down on a serving plate or cutting  board and tap the bowl so that the saran wrap releases. If it doesn’t work, you can flip the bowl over, and pull the saran wrap gently to release, and then flip the bowl over again onto the cutting board and the watermelon bombe will come right out.

Step 3: Add the watermelon sorbetto and smooth to make the final layer

Slice the watermelon bombe to look exactly like a watermelon, serve and enjoy!

The Verdict: A for effort. A for execution. B/C for presentation. Not my best showing, but a valiant effort at that. This was truly a beautiful creation, it just didn’t go as swimmingly as trusty Martha’s. But hey, this is the 365scoops version, and for that, I say dig in!

Lime Sorbet

8 Aug

“If life gives you limes, make a margarita.” ~ Jimmy Buffett

Loads of limes (how's that for alliteration?)

Mr. Buffett is a wise man. I probably should have listened to him and made margarita sorbet instead. Oh well, I’ll have to do that another time. Perhaps Cinco de Mayo.

Since I still only have one small ice cream maker, and therefore only one bowl for the machine (which, mind you, has to be frozen for 18-24 hours before use), I had to devote all of last week to making this ridiculous Watermelon Bombe. So, each day I came home from work, created another sorbet or ice cream, shaped it, froze it, and hoped for the best. In a few days I’ll reveal the actual Watermelon Bombe but for now, you’ll have to learn about the grueling process…

This lime sorbet started out all fine and dandy. I decided to try a new recipe from Bruce Weinstein, who wrote The Ultimate Ice Cream Book. Can’t be bad, right? Wrong!  Note to self: Don’t trust a recipe blindly again.

Here’s the scoop. I needed a green flavor for the watermelon “rind” in my watermelon bombe. I decided that lime sorbet would be best, and by adding green food coloring I got the perfect watermelon “rind” color. Not so fast.  I squeezed and zested limes until my fingers were sore, whisked an egg white until my weak little arm muscles were pissed, all in hopes of a limey treat. Ohy….not what I hoped for.

Squeezing those limes. A little trick to help get all the juice out, cut the limes in half and stab the cut side with a fork while squeezing. Trust me, it works!

I can’t quite figure out what made the sorbet so weird. First and foremost, it was way too sweet. I mean sickeningly sweet. And that means a lot coming from a self-proclaimed sweet-o-holic. I tried to offset the sweetness with lime zest – lots of it – even though the recipe didn’t call for any. Using my brand new citrus zester certainly made this much easier. But still, no good.

But then a funny thing happened on the way to the freezer…by some miracle of miracles, I let the sorbet freeze overnight and you know what, it lost some of its sweetness. I’m not sure how it happened, but it transformed from a painfully sweet, questionable sorbet, to a little more of a refreshing ( and sweet) summer treat. Another possibility is that it grew on me.  Either way, next time I make lime sorbet I’m going to use a lot less sugar, and a lot more lime.

Lime Sorbet

Adapted from Bruce Weinstein’s recipe

Stirring the lime juice into the egg white and sugar syrup mixture

Ingredients

1 1/4 cups sugar**

2 cups water

1 large egg white

2/3 cup fresh lime juice (from 6-7 large limes)

zest from 2-3 limes, according to taste

Approximately 5 drops of green food coloring

**If you know anything about making sorbet, you’ll notice that the water to sugar ratio here is not accurate. For simple syrup you need 1 cup water for every 1 cup sugar. In Bruce’s recipe the ratio is 1 1/4 cups sugar for 2 cups water, or a little less than 2:1. That should be the first red flag! Anyhow…

Method

Combine the sugar and water in a small saucepan and place over low heat. Stir until the sugar dissolves completely. Raise the heat and boil the syrup for one minute, and remove from the heat.

...And poof, it's green!

In a medium mixing bowl lightly beat the egg white with a whisk or an electric beater until foamy. Slowly beat in the hot sugar syrup and continue to beat until the meringue (aka egg white) cools down. Add in the lime juice and lime zest. Cover and refrigerate until cold or overnight. You’ll notice that the mixture will have foam on top, don’t worry it will incorporate into the sorbet when it freezes.

Stir the chilled mixture and freeze in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. When finished, the sorbet will be soft and ready to eat. If you’re just making this for a refreshing treat then I say eat it out of the machine. If you’re saving it for a watermelon bombe (which I was) you’ll have to mold it into the watermelon shape. I’ll tell you all about this in a few days, hold your horses!

Fully churned, that stuff looked beautiful...The taste, on the other hand...

The Verdict: Eh. Way way way too sweet. If the simple syrup proportion was correct, and we omitted the egg white, I have a feeling this would have been much better. But, the lime zest definitely saved the day, and when this was served in conjunction with vanilla ice cream and watermelon sorbet, the overly sweet lime flavor was definitely tempered. Phew.

Stay tuned for more on the Watermelon Bombe. Trust me, it was cool.

Watermelon Sorbetto

4 Aug

“When one has tasted watermelon, he knows what the angels eat.” ~ Mark Twain

Look at that sorbetto!

Yesterday was a great day. Not only was it National Watermelon Day but I also met David Lebovitz. Yes, that’s right. I. Met. David. Lebovitz. It was epic.

So, in honor of this most auspicious day, I’ve decided to make David Lebovitz’s watermelon sorbetto. It just so happens that this is the first of  a few entries for my Watermelon Bombe, which will be debuted (hopefully!) later this week. It’s quite an undertaking, but if all goes as planned, I will be recreating a watermelon from lime sorbet, vegan vanilla ice cream and watermelon sorbetto. I’ll leave the rest to your imagination…

I would be remiss if I forgot to mention Jerry Seinfeld’s hilarious stand-up bit about the seedless watermelon. I first heard this routine on a mixed tape – yes, a mixed tape – one summer at camp. Thankfully, technology has progressed since then and I found the youtube video.

It’s so funny, I know. I keep laughing, and replaying. Some things never change.

If you want to read the complete transcript from Seinfeld’s watermelon bit here you go…

I’ll leave you with one fun fact before the recipe. Did you know that watermelons are not actually a fruit? Contrary to popular belief, watermelons are vegetables and part of the cucumber and squash family. So, next time someone tells you to eat a vegetable, pick up a watermelon and you’ll show them who’s boss!

Watermelon from the trusty fruit vendor

Watermelon Sorbetto

From David Lebovitz’s Perfect Scoop

Ingredients

3 cups of seedless watermelon puree*

1/2 cup sugar

1-2 tbs lime juice

1 tbs vodka (optional)

pinch of salt

1-2tbs of mini chocolate chips (for seeds!)

*To get 3 cups of watermelon puree, you’ll need approximately 3lbs of watermelon. I bought a 5.5lb watermelon which yielded 6.5 cups of watermelon puree.

Watermelon puree. It just looks so refreshing.

Method

Remove the watermelon rind and cut the fruit (actually, the vegetable!) into small pieces. Puree the watermelon in the blender until smooth. There will be small white seeds, don’t worry about it.

Pour 1/2 cup of the watermelon puree and 1/2 cup of sugar into a pot. Turn on the stovetop, heat, and stir until well-blended. Turn off the stove and pour the rest of the 2 1/2 cups of watermelon puree into the pot. Add 1-2tbs of fresh squeezed lime juice, and 1 tbs of vodka (I did!). Remember, using alcohol will affect the freezing temperature, so you may notice that the sorbetto is a little softer than usual when done churning, it will harden more in the freezer.

Refrigerate the mixture until chilled completely. Pour into the bowl of an ice cream maker and churn according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Approximately 2-3 minutes before done churning add in the chocolate chips for “seeds”.  Scoop the mixture into a freezer safe container and freeze. Before eating make sure to defrost for 5-10 minutes first; watermelon has a high water content and so the sorbetto will be quite hard straight out of the freezer.

Watermelon sorbetto (check out those chocolate chip seeds!)

The Verdict:

Authentically watermelon! I like that this recipe was no frills – and really highlighted the true watermelon flavor. The lime juice is essential – it actually awakens the watermelon flavor. The vodka helped too as it kept the sorbetto a little softer. And of course, the chocolate chips were too cute to resist.

Alphonso Mango Sorbetto

6 Jul

Hurley: Did either of you see a bald guy with slippers carrying a coconut come through here?

Charlie: No, but I did see a polar bear on roller skates with a mango.

~ LOST

A little shout out to all you LOST fans out there! For those of you who were equally as disappointed as I was at the season finale, that quote just about sums everything up. If you’re thinking WHAT?? just like I am, you’re not alone. Every other LOST fan feels the same way.

Um, woops. I bought way too much alphonso mango puree. I'll just have to save it for a rainy day!

Anyhow, this mango sorbet is very special to me and I’ve been waiting a while to make it so that it would be just right.

A little history about my love affair with mangoes…

For the past six years I’ve been lucky enough to work in Kenya, delivering health programming to children and families living with HIV/AIDS. I first fell in love with the country, its people, and its incredible mangoes,  in 2003. Right before heading to Kenya for the first time, I spent a few days in London with The Boyfriend (who was upgraded to The Husband nearly four years ago!) and we enjoyed one of the most delicious mangoes ever. Then, teary-eyed from saying goodbye, I boarded a plane for Kenya and spent a semester living and studying in Nairobi. Each morning I ate a mango for breakfast, intent on sampling every single mango that country had to offer.  I started to notice that there were hundreds of different varieties of mangoes – some were more sweet and orange in color, others were more tart and yellow in color. The mango shapes and sizes varied greatly as well. I even learned that some coastal Kenyan communities eat unripened mangoes with chili sauce for a really tart and spicy treat! (this will come as no surprise to you that I prefer mine sweet!)

You see, mangoes are one of my absolute favorite fruits in the world. Perhaps because when The Husband and I first started dating many years ago we enjoyed them together in London , or perhaps because they remind me of the time I’ve spent in Kenya. Scents, they say, can really transport you to another place in time and the powerful scent of mangoes elicits in me a special feeling – one that reminds me of very fond memories.

Mango Sorbetto + Dried Pineapple = Pure Tropical Heaven

But, no mango holds as special of a place in my heart as the  alphonso mango. Originally from India, this mango has a very bold “mango” flavor. That might sound sort of weird, but for those of you who regularly enjoy the Mexican mangoes for sale at fruit vendors in NYC, you’ll notice that while they’re really sweet and delicious, they’re more yellow in color than orange, and a little less mango-ey than you may expect. That’s why I chose the alphonso mango as the star of this sorbetto. The alphonso mango is so rich and creamy, and gives off such a true mango smell, it’s really hard to resist. Trust me.

For a little additional burst of the tropics, I decided to add Kopali Organics dried pineapples as a topping. These organic treats not only taste good, but they are also good for you, and good for the small organic farmers, the unsung heroes who still practice truly sustainable agriculture. It’s truly a win-win-win situation.

So, here’s the recipe for a simply delicious, mind-numbingly easy alphonso mango sorbetto. Boy does it bring back good memories…

The sorbetto is churning...what a beautiful color!

Alphonso Mango Sorbetto

From the Ciao Bella Cookbook

Ingredients

1 30-ounce can of Ratna brand sweetened Alphonso Mango Puree (trust me on this brand it came highly recommended from a manager at an Indian restaurant and by the shopkeeper, you can get it at any Indian market, I got mine here )

1 cup water

1/2 cup sugar

I was feeling a little sassy so I gave my mango sorbetto a mohawk. Can you blame me?

Method

This is a hard one. Not sure you can handle it. NOT!

In a medium saucepan, combine the water and sugar and bring to a boil, whisking often to dissolve the sugar. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 4 minutes, continuing to whisk until the sugar is dissolved. Remove from the heat and let cool, first outside the refrigerator, and then in the refrigerator until cold, which will take approximately 1 hour.

Pour the simple syrup into a bowl, and stir in the mango puree. Whisk until completely blended. Pour the mango mixture into the bowl of an ice cream machine and churn according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Transfer to an airtight container and freeze for at least two hours before serving.

The Verdict: It was a hit! This mango flavor was so powerful, and sweet, and oh-so-mangolicious!  First, for a tropical twist I ate it with the dried Kopali pineapple. That was awesome. The next day, I decided to eat it with some fresh fruit and topped it with berries. That too was awesome. Sensing a trend? Really good and really refreshing, no matter how you scoop it!

Screme!

24 Apr

What’s your favorite flavor? ~ Me

Who do you love more, your mom or your dad? How can I answer that? ~ Screme Gelato Bar Owner

5,000 Flavors!

It’s been three days in a row that I’ve eaten at Screme Gelato Bar. (But who’s counting?)

I remember when I was a little kid my mom used to tell me that too much of a good thing was bad. Sure, that may be the case for silly childhood obsessions but it’s certainly not the case for gelato, ice cream, sorbet…you get the point!

As many of you know, I need my daily fix of sweets. Some people say they need something sweet after dinner to round out the meal.

That is not me.

I need something sweet each day to live. Seriously, I cannot remember a day in my life in which I passed up a dessert, refused something sweet, or went without ice cream or cake.  For many of you this may sound like a familiar story, and you’re sitting there reading this blog post shaking your head and thinking “Yes!  I am not alone!”

Look no further. You have found your partner in crime:  Screme Gelato Bar

My delicious passion fruit sorbet!

Today I had a lovely conversation with the owner of Screme Gelato Bar. Our meeting started out with a taste of six (I know because I couldn’t hold all those spoons at once) different sorbets and gelatos until I finally decided on passion fruit. For a chocolate lover that seemed a bit strange, but any of you who taste the passion fruit sorbet you’ll understand why. The flavor is incredible, spot on. Perfect.

I asked the owner how he got into the ice cream business. Naturally I assumed he was a frozen treat aficionado just like me.

False.

I nearly fell off my chair when he told me that he didn’t really even like ice cream (that is, until he tried Aldo gelato in Israel). I couldn’t believe my ears! Here is a man who owns two gelato bars in NYC (with more coming soon!), has created over 5,000 (yes, five thousand!) different gelato and sorbet recipes,  and he is not even that obsessed with ice cream. Something seemed wrong!

Rewind a few years. The owner of Screme told me that while living in Israel, his wife used to take his kids out for ice cream daily (I love her already!) when he finally told her that perhaps this wasn’t the most healthy habit for the kids. The wife said “don’t knock it ’till you try it”, so the owner found himself swinging by an Israeli gelato bar, Aldo, and realized that his wife was on to something. (Lesson learned:  the wife is always right!). After he tried Aldo’s gelato he was addicted and decided to bring this business to NYC in the form of Screme Gealto Bar. I promise, after visiting Screme, you’ll be addicted too!

Fast forward three years. Screme, which can be found in two locations on the UWS (Broadway between 69th and 70th AND 94th and Amsterdam) boast fresh new flavors daily. And don’t even get me started on the customer service. It’s incredible! Each employee allows you to taste as many flavors as you want. Think of it this way, everybody loves something free. Taste as many samples as you want, and Screme promises that you’ll be hooked. So, for two minutes the employees actually become your best friend, by letting you taste whatever you want, and allowing for a “screme break in your life.” It’s really perfect.

Now, if your mouth isn’t watering yet, take a look at this video. You’ll see how Screme makes their incredible creations, and you’ll find yourself running to get your very own.

A signature component of the Screme gelato is fresh ingredients and flavors. If you are eating the pistacio gelato, you’re eating real pistacios imported from Italy, not syrup. If you try the mango sorbet, you get to taste little bits of crushed mangoes, not syrup. If you’re eating the Margarita, you are tasting real tequilla, limes, and a hint of sea salt. Finally, if you’re lucky enough to have tried their Cap’n Crunch Gelato you’ll be able to close your eyes and really feel like you’re eating a creamy and delicious bowl of that favorite childhood cereal. It’s the real deal. And let me tell you, you can really taste the difference. Once you taste the magical frozen treat, you’ll never go back to the synthetic flavors, it’s impossible. You’re dealing with the Rolls Royce of Gelato here, trust me!

A full sensory experience!

And if that’s not enough, you really get a full sensory experience at Screme. First, you see these mountains of fresh gelato and sorbet that actually scream your name (ha, get it, scream!) If that’s not enough, you get unlimited tastes of the gelato and sorbet. Finally, you smell fresh, home-made waffles cooking and you’ll find yourself ordering a waffle a-la-mode. There is nothing better.

The Verdict:  Run, don’t walk to Screme. They’re open now (and kosher for Passover!). And if that’s not enough, it’s the first nice day here in NYC since 2010, so get yourself a treat from Screme and you’ll be on cloud nine!