Saturday, June 21, 2008

Chocolate Pavlova

Anna Pavlova (1881-1931) was lovely...angelic...graceful...wimsical....she was simply the best at her craft. According to Wikipedia, "Pavlova is a legend largely remembered for her famous dance The Dying Swan and because she was the first ballerina to travel around the world and bring ballet to people who had never seen it." As with all such fascinations, people do all sorts of crazy things to honor those that they adore. Some crazy baker in either New Zealand or Australia named a dessert after her. Hence, the name PAVLOVA. "The dessert is believed to have been created to honour the dancer during or after one of her tours to Australia and New Zealand." Leach, Helen, The Pavlova Story, 2008.

Well, I love a good story and a good dessert. Yes, it's here and in a chocolate form! The Chocolate Pavlova has been added to the dessert menu!! It is light and velvety and has fresh fruit on top...This is definitely a great summer treat if I do say so myself.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Billionaire's Ice Cream

So Summer finally came to the Ohio Valley. With it we've had torrential rains, flooding, and loads of wind...I'll huff and I'll puff and I'll blow your city not really. What's this have to do with ice cream you might be asking yourself? And what's a chocolate guy doing talking about ice cream anyways....that's for those other places you might go, right? Well yes and no. With a change in season is a change in what we serve...It's time for ICE CREAMS!! Yes, it's plural as in more flavors this year. We have traditional vanilla but it's soooo vanilla. It has good flavor but let's face it....there's no magic in a vanilla world. I like chocolate with my ice cream as you might expect. But what else should be in it? Hmmmm...this has had me thinking. What else could there be?? My ever resourceful mentor and friend, Chef Judy from, suggested that I try some interesting flavor combinations and see what happens. So, with a swift kick in the boot from Judy, off we go...The first one is courtesy of Chef David Lebovitz's recipe "Candied Bacon Ice Cream" except we call it "Billionaire's Ice Cream". According to Lebovitz, bacon is baked in brown sugar to give it a caramelized glaze. Well, I wish you could smell the delicacy that was wafting from my kitchen this morning as I slowly baked these savory was mind numbing and I had a seriously hard time concentrating on anything else as I impatiently paced back and forth from my oven to my work table back to the oven again as gentle fumes of seared bacon and caramel floated in the air...The ice cream is a custard base with a healthy dose of cocoa powder and a touch of cinnamon to give it accent. And ooohhh, it's speaks fluently....

Ok, I've gotten a few reactions to it already from a couple of customers...meat in ice cream??? Seriously before you judge, it's the full package that makes the deal work. The savory and sweet and heat all blend to make this ice cream a bit of heaven here on earth....

Kevin from KC Hotdogs across the street from me said, "it's perfect". Here's his picture to prove the point!! (sorry about the graininess) BTW: Kevin has the best Vienna beef hotdogs in town....the "Uncle Bucks" is seriously good...but that's for another chat.