So… Today, we will talk about your favorite topic! Which is that? But, of course…THE ICE CREAM!!! It would seem weird to me if there was someone between us claiming that he/she doesn’t like ice cream. Then, I will wonder: Not any kind of ice cream? And you know what? I’m not referring to the flavors. Yes, yes…that’s right! I’m not referring to the flavors, but to the different kinds of ice cream. Because, there might be -indeed- countless (truly, countless!) flavors, but there are also several kinds of ice cream too. This is exactly what I’m going to talk to you about in this diary. In fact, not only will I talk to you about it, but I will also give you some incredible recipes to make them at home, try them, and then choose your favorite (if you don’t already have one). What do you think, shall we take a look at them one by one?
Our…frozen journey begins with the… granita! Why did I choose granita as my starting point? Because, most probably, that was the first…frozen dessert ever recorded in history. You see, no one knows precisely when ice cream was invented. Nevertheless, many historical books record that people used snow as the basis of the first ice creams, while for adding…flavor, they used honey, fruits, milk, even rice! All this together (apart from the…rice!), refer to -what else- everyone’s favorite granita. It is made from the juice or puree of various fruits with the addition of sugar or other sweeteners. It looks like a sorbet (for which we will talk about below), it simply differs from it regarding its texture which is thicker, since milk or even heavy cream can be used for its preparation.
Next stop? Sorbet. Things do not change a lot regarding the taste or the consistency of your frozen dessert. Its main ingredient, in this case too, is the juice or puree of fruits. But, here, we (usually) have complete absence of milk or heavy cream; nevertheless, sugar or other sweeteners are used to enhance its sweet flavor even more.
And like that, we get to the classic, all-time favorite ice cream…Some people say it dates back to 1300 and that it was Marco Polo who first introduced it to Europe (not in its present form, but in a similar one) and then, it managed to reach the Americas at around 1700 as a delicacy meant for the high society. Why? Because only people who belonged in it could have access to the raw materials needed for its preparation, but also to the ways needed in order to preserve it frozen and then, be able to enjoy it. Gradually, its texture changed (with the addition of various ingredients and with experimentations regarding their quantity) and as years went by, we slowly got to the well-known ice cream with the rich, creamy flavor and texture that we enjoy in a cup, on a cone or…on waffles, by accompanying it with several toppings. Made with full fat or sweetened condensed milk, and usually with the addition of heavy cream, it is the favorite treat of young and old alike!
And from the plain ice cream, we get to the parfait ice cream. Some love it, others do not want it. It is an ice cream pretty richer not only in taste, but also in calories. This is because of the heavy cream and the eggs that it mainly contains, as well as the nuts, the syrup, and the rest of its ingredients.
And if you are among those people who love parfait ice cream, then you most probably like semifreddo too! Its name comes from the Italian words “semi-freddo” which mean semi-frozen. So, it’s a dessert not a lot like the ice cream we’ve been used to, but more like a chilled mousse. It is a kind of ice cream which is becoming more and more well-known since a lot of people choose it not only during summer but -mainly- during… winter!
Our last stop? A trend that became nearly an obsession a few years ago, when we observed that frozen yogurt corners started popping up all around our country, like mushrooms! So, frozen yogurt. If it is made without the addition of sugar or heavy cream, we are indeed talking about a plain chilled yogurt which is accompanied, though, by various toppings like spoon sweets, sprinkles, candies, fruits, cereals, melted chocolate, and so many more garnishes which could increase its calories greatly.
So, now, you have a rather complete picture of what “goes on” in the world of ice cream. In the planet of our favorite treat – and not only when we were kids, but during every summer of our lives. Whichever you prefer, I’ll be very happy to see you making it using one of the recipes that I made for all of you. And after such a diary, I can only think of one way to say goodbye (until the next one). Which is that?
Have a wonderful summer! The best is yet to come and -believe me- it’s a lot…tastier than you can imagine :-)