Wednesday, July 11, 2012
If you've ever been to New York, or had an encounter with a New Yorker, you know that there is a serious distinction between New York (as in "the City") and everywhere else, as in Long Island, or upstate New York. There's also a distinction to be made between the different boroughs of New York City, with some people going as far as claiming that only Manhattan is actually "the City," because heaven forbid you refer to Queens or the Bronx as "the City." That's just blasphemy. I don't buy into all that though. I've had the privilege of living in Queens (although this doesn't really count; I was only 8 years old when we moved, so I didn't really do much living back then, as the extent of my solo adventures consisted of traveling to the corner store to buy a newspaper for my dad), Long Island, and most recently, Manhattan. I've gotten to know both Long Island and Manhattan pretty well, and I actually think that each has their good components.
While I like each, I have to admit that I'm definitely more of a big city person, and I can't get enough of Manhattan/New York City/whatever you wanna refer to it as. There's just something about the fact that there's always something new and exciting going on, and it's so nice to be able to escape from the monotony that is usually associated with suburban life. Not to mention that there's tons of amazing little hole-in-the wall-spots for food, which is of course, one of my favorite things in general. As much as I can't wait for the summer to be over so that I can move back to school, I do enjoy spending time on "the Island" every now and then. I mean, let's face it...there's the beach, backyards, barbecues, and home, and these are all good things. It's nice that home and Long Island are only a short train ride away on the LIRR (ugh), meaning that a home-cooked dinner, a little extra elbow room, and a slightly slower pace of life are never more than 42 minutes away. There is one more thing, however, that I absolutely love from Long Island, and it has nothing to do with home, or a more relaxed atmosphere. It's Italian ices...but not just any Italian ices. They have to be from Ralph's!
Ralph's Famous Italian Ices can be found almost everywhere on Long Island...literally. I'm not exaggerating when I say that there are 4 or 5 Ralph's storefronts within ten minutes from my house. These Italian ices are simply amazing, and my favorite flavor without question is the Spumoni sherbet. I always get spumoni when I go to Ralph's; I've been doing it for as long as I can remember! For those of you that don't know, spumoni is a flavor of Italian ice cream that is a combination of different flavors. The most traditional combination is pistachio, cherry, and chocolate. These are some of my favorite flavors, so it's no surprise that I love spumoni!
This is a spin on one of my favorite summertime treats. As soon as I saw a recipe for a spumoni milkshake, I knew I HAD to make it. There was just no way I could pass up having a delicious spumoni treat in the comfort of my own kitchen! Like any other milkshake, this spumoni milkshake comes together quickly and easily. All you need is a little time to allow the cherry sauce to cool down slightly, and then you're pretty much ready to go. I found that the recipe makes more hot fudge sauce than needed for two milkshakes, but I mean, let's be serious...is having leftover hot fudge sauce ever a problem? Nope, it's definitely not. I saved the rest of the hot fudge for later and used it to top off some more ice cream that I had in my freezer. Problem solved! This milkshake is a perfect re-interpretation of the classic spumoni sherbet served at Ralph's...if you find yourself on Long Island this summer, make sure to make a stop at Ralph's so you can see for yourself! In the meantime though, this milkshake should do the trick. Enjoy!
recipe from Food Network Magazine, June 2012
For the Hot Fudge Sauce
1/2 cup finely bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup sweetened condensed milk
For the Cherry Sauce
1 cup pitted and halved cherries
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 pint pistachio ice cream
1/4 cup milk
Begin by preparing the hot fudge sauce. Microwave together the bittersweet chocolate, cream, and condensed milk, stirring frequently, until the chocolate has melted and a smooth sauce has formed.
In a sauce pan, cook the cherries, sugar, and lemon juice together, until the cherries become slightly soft and syrupy. Remove the cherry sauce from the heat, and allow to cool.
In a blender, combine the pistachio ice cream and milk, and blend together. Layer the hot fudge sauce, cherries, and ice cream into glasses, and serve immediately. Enjoy!
Makes 2 milkshakes