What you need to know:
- Gulf News is going on an ice cream trail this Ramadan.
- Our seventeenth pick of the month is the Japanese fried ice cream.
- Be prepared for our list of 29 ice creams for 29 days.
- End your fast and enjoy the Summer months with these sweet and cold treats.
When I first heard of a dessert called fried ice cream, I was very confused. How does one fry ice cream? The concept seemed impossible. But I was wrong. Fried ice cream does exist and it is delicious, which is why it is our 17th pick of the month.
#17 Fried ice cream
What is it?
Tempura ice cream is popularly known as fried ice cream. The ice cream is breaded and quickly deep-fried at a high temperature. A warm crispy shell is created around the still cold ice cream, and it is usually served with fruit.
There are conflicting stories about the dessert’s origin. However, according to popular opinion, fried ice cream is associated with Asian culture, specifically Japanese culture, and it is known as Japanese fried ice cream in some restaurants. Peter Edson wrote an article in 1961 for the American newspaper The Times-News about his trip to Japan, wherein he mentioned the fried dessert.
He said: “You get it [fried ice cream] in tempura restaurants, where they fry your food in sesame seed deep fat, right in front of you, a bite at a time.”
How is it made?
The dish is available in the UAE and is served slightly differently in restaurants. The dish uses ice cream that can be either vanilla, chocolate or strawberry flavoured.
The frozen dessert is coated in tempura flour, egg and Panko or Japanese-style bread crumbs that are traditionally used as a coating for deep-fried foods, to coat the ice cream.
The dish is fried at a very high temperature, for not more than a minute. Once the outer coating turns a golden brown, it is strained and ready to serve. While some restaurants cut the roughly donut–sized ball while serving it, other serve it intact. Fruits and chocolate sauce can be served with it.
In his article, Edson said that the batter provided an insulating layer to the scoop of ice cream and prevents it from melting.
The crispy and warm texture of the outer layer in comparison to the cool ice cream is surprising and is something that should be on your list.
Where can you find it?
The dessert can be found at Atisuto, New Shanghai, P.F Chang’s, Miyabi sushi and in many other Asian restaurants.
Chef Joy, head chef at Atisuto said: “We use our home-made Japanese cheesecake to coat the ice cream, in addition to the flour and Panko. Adding cheesecake is our twist to it.
“We serve it with fruit because it is very refreshing. It is a good combination.”
At New Shanghai, The fried ice cream is served on chocolate sauce. Head chef at the restaurant Ju Yi said: “I have eaten this ice cream when I was small and we enjoy it. Grandparents make this dessert for their grandchildren because children really like this.”
Price: Dh32 (Atisuto, Bay Avenue for 6 pieces) and Dh28 (New Shanghai, Dubai Mall)
Where: Different versions of fried ice cream can be found at P.F Chang’s, Miyabi sushi and other Asian restaurants.
Have you tried this? Tell us your experience. And watch this space for the next 28 picks for Ramadan.
Have your own favourites? Tell us on firstname.lastname@example.org.