It is in situations like this where I just remind myself, this is why I have goals.
One day I will have an unlimited grocery budget and a test kitchen. One day. One day. One day.
Fiascos are bound to happen, but this one came at a particularly inappropriate time, and after a particularly pricy Whole Foods bill.
Thanks, Food & Wine, or maybe it’s not all your fault.
My June issue arrived this past Saturday. Naturally, I give it some time to breathe on the kitchen counter, and Sunday morning, as I dove into my mock Mother’s Day Brunch (whole grain waffle with organic peanut butter and strawberries) I started turning the pages.
I must admit I really was not searching for something to make to bring along with me to Mother’s Day dinner that evening. I wanted to bring a dessert, but if I wasn’t inspired by something, I wasn’t going to stress. I ordered a gorgeous Strawberries and Cream cake from Whole Foods: best back up plan ever, so if all else fails, fresh strawberries and perfectly sweetened cream by the plateful would still be a home run.
But on page 80, there was a beautiful picture and a recipe that I knew my family would love.
Food & Wine Magazine’s: Ice Cream Bon Bons
… I had 3 hours to put something together, so cakes were out, cookies are more an “any occasion” rather than “special occasion” item, but ice cream bon bons …. and some that weren’t from the famed family favorite, Trader Joes? A winner… Or so I thought.
Over 15 dollars of chocolate, 10 dollars of ice cream, 5 dollars of cookies, and breaking open an extra special bag of gorgeous sea salt from Cyprus later …. I was left with nothing.
The recipe, as noted, came from Penny Ice Creamery in Santa Cruz. Call me cynical but I think Food & Wine readers have fallen victim to a recipe that does not follow the “whole truth and nothing but the truth so help the food Gods” vow. Yes world, many many recipes we read are missing either a secret ingredient or a secret step…. and THAT is learned the hard way.
I followed the directions exactly. Okay, so I created my own combination of dark and white chocolate but even so, portions, timing, steps, all as noted in the directions and ingredient list.
For ice cream I used one of the most delicious options in the Whole Food’s frozen section, Talenti Gelato. I was hoping to do half of the Bon Bons with this indulgent option, and the other half with Skinny Cow ice cream, to give a guiltless go to. I kept the ice cream frozen until the absolute last second, and used a glass of ice water in between ice cream scoops.
Still I was left with melty, misshapen MESSES.
After a lot of Google searches, cookbook quests, and calls to the experts in my life … I figured out the missing step. An extra FREEZE.
In order to prevent the melting, and the poorly shaped balls… use your ice cream scoop to form the perfect sized Bon Bons and freeze each one twice.
Once: As soon as they are scooped, before their dive into the chocolate
Again: After you cover them in chocolate, dip them in the cookie crumbles, and salt them with sea salt.
So, before you embark on this recipe, because it truly is delicious and enticing, take my advice and alter the directions. Penny Ice Creamery may or may not have kept their secret step to themselves, maybe I just simply don’t have Bon Bon skills like they do, but I am pretty sure the double freeze is the best way to ensure picture perfect Ice Cream bites.