Endless Ice Cream: Cherry Whiskey Caramel

When I saw the Father’s Day cake from bakersroyale, I knew I had to make it. Actually, I made two. It was one of those fortuitous days where I had everything on hand for the recipe, plus a little extra. Have you ever eaten something that has left you breathless, wordless? That’s how I felt about this cake.  The combination of flavors was just perfect. So of course I had to convert it to ice cream form: almond flavored ice cream, with a salted caramel swirl and whiskey-soaked cherries. And while the ice cream didn’t leave me quite as stunned as that cake did, it is very, very delicious. The cherries can be made and refrigerated up to 3 days ahead, and the salted caramel sauce can be made up to 2 weeks ahead if you’re not up to tackling everything in one day.

Cherry Whiskey Caramel Ice Cream

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Are You a Supertaster?

For serious foodies, there’s nothing more embarrassing than being exposed as having a poor palate. Recently, I had a quite horrifying experience at Ample Hills Creamery in Brooklyn. Everyone in the borough has raved about their “salted crack caramel,” a deep, savory ice cream rich with the intense notes of burnt sugar. But when I finally tried Ample Hill’s caramel, I absolutely, 100% hated it. At first I thought there was something wrong with my spoon; that’s how much I disliked the strong, bitter taste of it. Even as three friends next to me all practically had a collective oral orgasm while shoving the ice cream into their faces, I couldn’t get the taste out of my mouth quickly enough. I went home and literally washed my mouth out. Not kidding.

What had happened? Is my palate too weak to support the taste of this cracked-out ice cream? Or…am I just a SUPERTASTER? Many of you have likely already heard about this concept. If not, here’s a brief intro from SupertasterTest.com:

Supertasters experience taste with far greater intensity than the average person. About 25 percent of Americans are supertasters, a group with an unusually high number of taste buds. If you love food more than most, you may have inherited supertaster genes.

Evidence suggests that supertasters are more sensitive to bitter tastes and fattiness in food, and often show lower acceptance of foods that are high in these taste qualities. Supertasters tend to dislike strong, bitter foods like raw broccoli, grapefruit juice, coffee and dark chocolate.

A-ha! So maybe it wasn’t a palate failure, but just an instance of my true taste bud elitism coming out. Clearly, the ES team needed to investigate this further. Armed with a packet of tests from Supertastertest.com, we got to work.

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Peeps Gone Wild

OK, we’re addicted. We’ve realized that those puffy Easter candies everyone throws out around May 1st are good for more than just target practice. Turns out you can put them in everything from brownies to pizza. In hopes of never letting another peep go stale, here are our favorite peeps recipes from ES and around the web.

Salted Caramel and Dark Chocolate Covered Peeps

Raspberry Eggplant blog gives the purple guys a gourmet makeover.

Recipe: salted caramel and dark chocolate covered peeps

Peeps Monkey Bread

Pull-apart buttermilk biscuits stuffed with peeps, via the Knead for Speed

Recipe: Peeps monkey Bread

Peeps’mores

Chocolate bunnies and flourescent bunnies combine to make one perfect Easter snack, courtesy of Foy Update.

Recipe: peeps s’mores

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Spring Forward to Summer: Chocolate and Salted Caramel Pudding Pops

Spring has just begun and I’m already fast forwarding to summer with these pudding pops. It’s hard to deny a chocolate and salted caramel pairing.  Especially one on a stick that is begging you to have a seat and enjoy the slow pacing a popsicle has to offer — that is if you can keep yourself from biting into it.

Incredibly easy to make and even easier to devour, you should have no problem whipping up a dozen or more of these in under 30 minutes. The hardest part will be waiting for them to freeze. Let me say that if you’ve never had a pudding pop, well it’s a lot like a Fudgiscle but better and richer.
So relax, enjoy and yield to the slow pace of licking a popsicle.
Chocolate and Salted Caramel Pudding Pops

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Thank You Uno: Chicken Tikka Masala Officially Jumps the Shark

uno

Chicken tikka masala already wins as the most inauthentic Indian dish of all time. The BBC calls it “synonymous with: breakdown in traditional British values and rise of multi-cultural Britain,” as it’s been crowned “Britian’s true national dish,” having been created there in the mid-20th Century.

In the United States we find this dish only at Indian restaurants and some UK-inspired pubs aggressively trying for authenticity. But that’s where the CTM deliciousness ends. Right?

That’s until I read about Uno’s “complete menu revamp.” Because of the volume of press releases sent to my inbox, I barely ever read all of them, especially when I have no interest in the subject matter. Now, I don’t have an interest in Uno’s, as it was my least favorite pizza chain (even over the despised Pizza Hut), but I was curious about how radically a pizza place’s menu could actually change.

The press release first mentioned a farro salad. I get this addition: ancient grains are having a serious moment and are seen as healthy, plus farro is deeply connected to Italy, as is Uno’s main draw, pizza.

But then it comes. Chicken Tikka Masala will join the cast with deep dish pizza and Rattlesnake pasta. I’m afraid chicken tikka masala now joins salted caramel (Uno also unveils a bread pudding with salty caramel sauce) as completely overexposed and a sure sign that a restaurant is totally fucking desperate with zero original ideas.

Original Jump the Shark (and its defender!)

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