What you need to know:
- Gulf News is going on an ice cream trail this Ramadan.
- Our 26th pick of the month is the ice cream sandwich.
- 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.
Our 26th pick of the month is the ice cream sandwich.
#26 Ice cream sandwich
What is it?
Ice cream can be served in many ways. The ice cream sandwich is a dessert that consists of ice cream ‘sandwiched’ between biscuit, slices of cake or cookies. The most popular way to serve it is with wafer biscuits. The reason why the ice cream sandwich is a unique creation is because it allows people to hold their ice cream, without having it melt. Some ice cream sandwiches use warm cookies, others serve the entire thing cold. It is popular all around the world and is served differently in every country.
In a report by US-based newspaper The New York Times, as mentioned in the book Of Sugar and Snow: A History of Ice Cream Making, by Jeri Quinzio, the ice cream sandwich came about in 1899, and the credit for this goes to a pushcart peddler. US-based food website delish.com, sites an article written by The New York Tribune in 1900, which said: “The ice cream sandwich man, who sells quarter-inch layers of alleged ice cream between tiny slabs of water wafers, did a big business during the hot spell.... He made the sandwiches quickly in a tin mould.” According to the article, in the beginning, the sandwich seller was known as a ‘hokey-pokey vendor’. The item was a popular English treat and the peddlers in London yelled “Okey-pokey!” to announce their presence.
These days, the ice cream sandwich is still popular, but has more variations and flavours.
People give their verdict
While the concept is very popular in the West and in India, not a lot of people have had the ice cream cookie sandwich in the UAE.
I spoke with a couple of residents, most of whom said they had seen the dessert on social media, but had not got around to trying them.
American national Haley L. loves the cookie sandwich combination. The 23-year-old tourist said: “I love the classic combination of chocolate chip cookie with vanilla in the middle. I had it a lot in school growing up. We used to have ‘ice cream days’ and my go-to was always the cookie ice cream sandwich.
“In my university, at lunchtime the dining hall would have hot, melting, gooey chocolate cookies. Sometimes when I was feeling like I needed a little extra sweet in my day, I would take two of those cooked, put vanilla ice cream in the middle, and eat it. It was just so good.”
Pakistani national and Dubai resident Mohammad Faizan has never eaten the ice cream sandwich but wants to try it. He said: “I have never eaten it in a shop outside, but I want to. I haven’t seen it so much on social media, but it is something that I have noticed in ice cream shops.
“We used to do this as children, put ice cream in between cookies, but I have not had it from a franchise as yet.”
Where is it available?
The ice cream sandwich can come in different variations and combinations, and they are found at quite a few restaurants and ice cream parlours in the UAE.
One place to get them are the Unicorn Vibes Café, Dubai (Dh35). Operation manager of the café, Nadia Khalid said: “I personally tried and fell in love with the ice cream cookie sandwich a few years ago in California, US. I had to include it on the menu.”
According to Khalid, customers can choose up to two flavours of cookies and two flavours of ice cream. They can also add a sweet sauce and a topping of their choice.
The Inventing Room, Dubai, also serves the ice cream cookie sandwich (Dh30). It comes in different ice cream flavours.
Chef Amin Tarmidzi of the Inventing Room said: “We make chocolate chip cookies in the story. The chocolate we use is milk chocolate. We actually made the cookies a couple of times before introducing them in the store, to get them right.
“We have a secret ingredient we use, which makes the texture of the cookie soft. The ice creams are all made at the store, in front of the customer, with the help of liquid nitrogen. We can add biscuits and toppings based on the customer’s choice.
Both cafés have their own version of the cookie monster ice cream cookie.
If you are vegan and love ice cream, this next option is for you.
The ice cream bars at Coco Yogo are raw vegan and healthy (Dh26). Operations manager for Coco Yogo, Evelin Novikova said: “All of the ingredients are unbroken, so your body gets the full enzymes from all the ingredients. We make our ice creams out of organic coconut cream, frozen fruits and bit of agave.”
She added that the chocolate ice cream they serve is made of cacao powder and date syrup. And matcha ice cream with matcha (green tea) powder, peppermint drops and cacao nibs.
“The sandwich part is made of almonds, dates, cacao and salt. After the sandwich is ready and frozen, we dip both ends into raw chocolate. We then toast it with coconut on one end and cacao nibs (Cacao nibs are small pieces of crushed cacao beans) on the other.”
Where: Unicorn Vibes Café, Jumeirah’s Wasl Vita Mall; Inventing Room, La Mer Dubai, Coco Yogo, bars available at Freedom Pizza Down Town, or their store in Greens. You an also get the ice cream sandwich at Switch Restaurant and The Yellow Monkey in Dubai. Take a trip to your local grocery store, you are bound to find a few options of this dessert there too.