Archive for August, 2013

The Vex That is Ice Cream, Redux: Perspective…..

After a busy week, and going into a busier week, Dennis got sick on Friday…sick enough that he had me worried—anyone who knows our history knows that the love of my life does NOTHING small…fever, stomach, out of it, and I freaked. He finally got to sleep and kept water down and in the morning he was weak, but the fever was gone and he managed his coffee and light food for the day….and we made the decision that we would NOT be participating in the Ice Cream Takedown today….I had started to get a small fever & headache myself, but woke up this morning feeling great….and Dennis was himself.

So, no surprise when, at 10:15 I was beckoned from upstairs ( I was having my latte, lounging, and watching bad TV) and as soon as I saw him at the foot of the steps, he smiled and said, “What do you think???? Do you think we can pull it off????” I was like “HELL yes we can….” And we got to work…and the egg yolks were separated, the cardamom pods separated, custard was poured into stainless steel pans to quick cool, both freezers were going, an extra batch of spiced whipped cream to fold into the frozen confection was conjured, and we ran out the door at 1:10….picked up pistachios and cashews, honey, and a snack, then headed to Somerville to the Armory with our “Hail Mary Cardamom….”

We recognized the participants and were also greeted by the man himself, Matt Timms who was thrilled that we made it–I had emailed yesterday that it would probably not happen….we had 10 minutes to set up and prepare, and found ourselves next to a really cool group of 20 somethings all of whom we have seen at the two other takedowns…they made a wild concoction of Marshmallow/Graham Cracker, Chocolate, and Slumbrew Porter that was like S’Mores with a good dose of alcohol…as table #1 we hit the ground running and were dishing out our creation, HMC, with salted crushed nuts, wild honey, garam masala and a pomegranate/tamarind/rosewater drizzle….the dry ice in the cooler finished the freezing process for us—scared and fascinated by dry ice—-we were up against Miso Caramel, 2 types of Key Lime, Cookies & Cream, Curry, Bourbon-Peach (heavy on the bourbon—-we loved it) and a few others—even a couple of people working magic with liquid nitrogen….

And then I checked my business email—-I can’t help myself—I work 24/7 and then some—the song of the self employed….the email was from a longtime occasional client and all it said was, “Hi Dennis and Christine, I need to talk to you, we need you desperately….” I have known her long enough to know that she is not one to use a phrase like that lightly…she is classic Massachusetts, and absolutely lovely….so I excused myself and told Dennis I had an emergency email from “G”….I went outside with a paper plate and a sharpie marker and called her back…come to find out her youngest daughter, who has 4 kids, has been diagnosed with breast cancer and starts chemo on Tuesday…the whole family, 3 generations follows the principles of Weston Price, raw milk, grass fed meats, and many other restrictions, and they know from years past that we know how to cook WP friendly food….so we are cooking meals for her daughter this Tuesday…

I went back into the competition area and briefly filled Dennis in and it was time for judging…and as competitive and egotistical as I can be, winning did not matter…I realized that 14 years of learning how to do stuff like fuse cardamom, saffron, cream and spices to make a wild dessert and learning the Weston Price principles pays off when we can help someone through an unimaginable horror….

We came in 4th in the professional judges category and did not place at all with the crowd….I don’t care….honorable mention is fine with me when I have my health, my family and friends have theirs, and that when it comes down to it , the vast skill set I have acquired over the years allows me to really help….

I will take that over a prize any day….and did I forget to mention, I love what we do?????