One of the hottest (or coolest) new trends in ice cream comes to us from far across the Pacific Ocean. Originating in Thailand, a newer way of serving the frozen treat ditches the scoop in favor of a less traditional approach.
Known as rolled ice cream, this Thai-style dessert has swept the United States in the last year, with more and more shops using the technique to serve ice cream in a form that most American consumers have never tried before.
To make it, milk is poured over a large and very cold plate. Ingredients are then added, ranging from fresh fruits like strawberries and peaches to indulgent items such as hot fudge, caramel, and Oreo cookies. The resulting mixture is then spread smooth, after which it is removed from the cold plate in long, thin curls using a scraper. The curls are arranged in a bowl or cup, topped with fruits, candies, or syrups, and are ready to be enjoyed.
The Instagram-worthy look of the concoctions is a large part of the appeal, but their taste and texture more than back it up. Reactions to rolled ice cream have been overwhelmingly positive.
“I see the adults react more to it than the kids now,” says Miguel Angel Cosme, owner of Freezing Point ice cream parlor in Lyndhurst, New Jersey. “The little kids say, ‘Hurry up, I want ice cream!’ but it’s the adults who are amazed. They like taking pictures and videos. Sometimes if things are a little slow, I have a customer try to roll their own ice cream because they like to post something like that on Instagram.”
As this the case with other ice cream trends like freakshakes, the gourmet style allows for plenty of flavor to be added, and combined with the shape of the ice cream it makes for a fun eating experience.
Considering how fast this trend is spreading, it won’t be long before shops like Freezing Point begin popping up in new cities every week. The technique can be easily mastered by any shop, so retail bakeries may be wise to jump aboard this trend if they want their frozen offerings to stand out.