Ice cream + Donut = A Double Chin Specialty

by Audrey Thorne ’19

Upon walking into what appeared from the outside a tiny store, I was excited by the vast and chic interior. Toting a wooden bench swing, almost lantern-like lights, both low and high tables, and an open connection to the bakery next door, the space is stunning.

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When asked what flavours were available for their ice cream donut sandwiches the man at the counter handed me a menu of the four donut sandwiches offered and informed me that the red velvet had run out. That meant that made my choice easier. Now I was stuck between three options instead of four. Though the image of the Galaxy was visually stunning, I finally decided to get the Nutella and the Matcha. I ordered one of each to go.

I tried the Nutella first. The flavour was reminiscent of a dark hot chocolate and had an overall smooth consistency. There were no surprises to the bite. The chocolate donut matched the chocolate ice cream. The rainbow sprinkles on top gave it a bit of texture. It was not too sweet.

Next I tried the Matcha. The first thing that hits me in the strong matcha flavour from the matcha powder topping the donut. The vanilla ice cream complements the matcha donut well. The donut is moist and the matcha powder is delectable. It is sweeter than the Nutella and more unique. The more I eat it, the more I want.

As far as ice cream donut sandwiches go, I have reached the verdict that the two together are exponentially better than either alone. They’re my favourite couple this Valentine’s Day.

Gâté Comme Des Filles and Somerville Chocolate: Your Valentine’s Destination

By Saranya Vijayakumar ’18 and Sara Surani ’181

We decided to cover Somerville’s chocolates again for Valentine’s day! During the winter months, Lizzy’s ice cream turns into a pop-up chocolate shop. The chocolates are made in collaboration between Alexandra Whisnant’s gáté comme des filles and Somerville Chocolate. The chocolates are made at Aeronaut, the brewery that also has a restaurant and somerville chocolate within the building.  

The woman running the shop is named Fallon and is absolutely amazing. Her fiery red hair and welcoming personality make the hole-in-the-wall treasure trove feel more like a chocolate home than a chocolate shop. She took us around the store and showed us the handmade chocolates. She gave us a few to try, including the white chocolate cardamom, the hazelnut praline, the vanilla bean, and the meyer lemon. Our favorites were the meyer lemon, with gold leaf on the top, and the hazelnut, which tasted like nutella…but better.

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The pop up lasts only until the end of February, when the shop becomes Lizzy’s ice cream again. It’s the perfect place to get a Valentine’s Day gift, with adorable Alice in Wonderland wrapping and tasty chocolates!

If you’re curious on what chocolates to try, gift to your loved one, or surprise your favorite galentine with, here are some of our suggestions!

Hazelnut praline:

Are you a Nutella-lover? Well, look no further! This all-organic, freshly made chocolate tastes just like nutella… except better. It has the warm soul-sensation of a Ferrero Rocher, but is both fluffier on the touch and gentler on the palate. It’s a classic crowd pleaser and brings back hints of nostalgia with its tones of crisp hazelnut. The nutella-like flavor hugs your tastebuds and doesn’t let go–much like your Valentine’s day date won’t let go after you two share this lovely treat together!

Lemon meyer:

Do you like your sweet with a hint of sass? Then the lemon meyer is your go-to! While this chocolate has a nice milk chocolate exterior like the other chocolates, the puckering tinge of lemon sets it apart from the rest! (Not to mention the delicately crafted gold leaf on top!) Not only does the lemon-y taste catch you by pleasant surprise, but the citrus-y taste lasts long after your chocolate has disappeared! The best part? It is all-organic, made with fresh meyer lemon juice, and is vegan-friendly!

Vanilla bean:

Want to stay on the safe side but still want to feel warm inside? If so, you can’t go wrong with the vanilla bean bonbon! Immediately upon biting into the creamy chocolate, you taste warm tones of both organic chocolate and Costa Rican vanilla bean. The two flavor duo compliments each other better than any of your two favorite duos–Bonnie and Clyde, Romeo and Juliet, Barak and Joe, you name it! This soothing flavor, accompanied by the dark valrhona chocolate ganache is a perfect chocolate for a snowy day!

White chocolate cardamom:

Are you a fan of Starbucks’ dirty chai latte? Then the white chocolate cardamom bonbon is perfect for you! This beautiful snowflake-colored bonbon has a glimmering creamy exterior and and an even creamier and fluffier interior. This hearty treat exudes warmth and content-ness with its smooth white chocolate hard shell and its strong flavor of cardamom on the inside. Even though though the tones of cardamon are strong, they gently dance on your tastebuds. Having a bad day? Wait no longer, this white chocolate cardamom is a great pick-me up and can turn any sub-par day into a stellar one!

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This tiny shop should not be overlooked. It’s a cozy place to go for a quick treat in the snowstorm, so check it out before it leaves for the year!

Also, Fallon has an art show on February 25th from noon to midnight at Warehouse XI. Everyone is invited. She’s super cool, so visit her at the chocolate shop and go to her show!

Seasonal Chocolate Pop-Up Shop in Harvard Square

By Allison Kao ’20

I found heaven tucked between a Starbucks and pizza parlor.

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Its name? Somerville on the Charles – a charming chocolate pop-up shop that is making its winter home on Harvard Square’s Church Street, keeping the space normally occupied by Lizzy’s Ice Cream cozy during the colder months.

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The shop, which is open 11am to 11pm, seven days a week from December to February, is a collab between Gâté Comme des Filles and Somerville Chocolates, each run separately by chocolatiers Alexandra Whisnant and Eric Parkes.

While the storefront only spans the width of a door and window display, its quaint, unassuming appearance by no means embodies the bold flavors of its chocolates.

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There are two main types of treats – French-style bon bons (provided by Gâté Comme des Filles) and chocolate bars (provided by Somerville Chocolates). Bon bons are creamy ganaches hand-dipped in a thin chocolate coating. With only two ingredients, cacao and sugar, the bean-to-bar chocolate brings sweetness down to its core raw goodness. The shop’s most popular items are the Hawaiian chocolate bar and honey-walnut and vanilla bean bon bons.

Everything is made in small batches, so flavors rotate daily. In addition, ingredients are chosen with great care – in fact, the honey, peppermint, and thyme are all sourced from right here in Cambridge.

Somerville on the Charles also offers to-die-for brownies and a rich, decadent mousse that’s scooped into cones like ice cream (what more could you ask for?!).

And if you’re looking for a holiday gift, check out the 4-piece giftbox or a combination of the Nicaraguan and Hawaiian chocolate bars.

At least for the next three months, I know where I’ll be going to satisfy my sugar fix.

 

 

Crazy Cake in a Mug

by Danielle Leavitt ’17

Hot chocolate is always my “go-to” drink in winter when I want to warm up. Just tasting that warm, soothing liquid somehow makes the snow outside disappear.  Recently, I was introduced to another cup of winter wonderland: a moist and chocolaty rich cake that is made entirely in a cup. Taking only minutes to prepare, this easy recipe is cooked in your microwave and will have you satisfied and wanting more! Best of all, it can be made gluten-free!

Dry Ingredients:

  • 5 tbsp flour (gluten free)
  • 4 ½ tbsp sugar
  • 2 tsp cocoa (unsweetened, most brands are gluten free except Ghirdeli)
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • pinch of salt

Wet Ingredients:

  • ½ tsp white vinegar
  • ¼ tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp vegetable oil
  • 4 1/2 tbsp water

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  • Spray the inside of a microwave safe mug with non-stick cooking spray
  • Mix the first 5 dry ingredients
  • After mixing, make 3 depressions in the dry ingredients.
  • Pour vinegar in one depression, vanilla in the other and the vegetable oil in the third
  • Pour the water on top
  • Mix well until smooth
  • Microwave for 2 minutes

To make your Crazy Mug Cake taste even better you can add mini marshmallows, chocolate chips (Enjoy Life brand are gluten free), M&Ms, sprinkles, shredded coconut, etc. This easy mug cake will not only taste great on a wintery day, but you could even have a cup of hot chocolate along with it!

Recipe from:

https://sites.google.com/site/sweetlittebluebird/crazy-cake-in-a-mug-single-serving-microwave-recipe

 

 

Hershey Kiss Acorn Treats

by Danielle Leavitt ’17

As always it’s a busy time in Harvard Yard. Tourists travel worldwide to see the infamous John Harvard statue, students study between classes in preparation for midterms, and photographers take pictures of the beautiful landscape and buildings at Harvard. But, mostly unnoticed, the busiest of all is the scampering squirrel who is gathering acorns and food for the upcoming winter. Especially now that winter looms and the bright colored chairs in Harvard Yard have been removed, the squirrel is even more noticeable as he stocks up on his impending feast for the next several months. The gluten free Hershey Kiss Acorn Treat is made in honor of the squirrel, in hopes that this winter, unlike the last, will be short and that the squirrel will have plenty of food to keep him satisfied. This recipe is very simple, but it is the perfect one-bite party snack that has an incredible chocolate peanut butter flavor.

Ingredients:

  1. Gluten free instant icing
  2. Gluten free mini vanilla wafers
  3. Hershey’s Kisses any flavor
  4. Reese’s Peanut Butter Chips

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Directions:

  1. Place mini vanilla wafers on a tray with the flat side of the cookie toward the top.

acorn22. Squeeze a small amount of icing onto the bottom of an unwrapped Hershey Kiss and place it onto the center of the cookie. Let sit for a few minutes to allow the icing to harden.

3. Place a small amount of icing onto the bottom of a Reese’s Piece and place onto center and top of the cookie.

acorn1This amazing acorn treat is a simple and tasty way to honor the squirrel and enjoy a great gluten free bite at the same time.
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Gluten Free Peanut Butter Balls

   Picture4by Danielle Leavitt ’17

It’s that time of year again when the crisp air and clear blue skies invite you to participate in their splendor. Winter will be coming soon, and the return to fluorescent bulbs and forced heat can dampen anyone’s spirits. This is a great time of year to enjoy being outside, whether it’s to take a walk or run along the river, canoe, or even hike. Fall leaves, apple picking, and spiced cider are traditional treats that we eat this time of year. In my family, we make simple Peanut Butter Balls that are not only delicious, but very healthy and can be used as a seasonal post work out snack or used as an on-the-go snack. Each ball has 100 calories and 5 grams of protein, are gluten-free, and easy to make!

Ingredients:

1/2 cup Natural Creamy Peanut Butter

1 scoop Vanilla Protein Powder

1 tsp Honey

1/2 cup Dark Chocolate Chips

1/2 tsp Coconut Oil

*all ingredients are Gluten free

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Directions:

  1. In a medium bowl, mix the peanut butter, protein powder, and honey together until it forms a dough (you may need. to add a little more protein powder if the dough is not thick enough)
  2. Cover a plate with parchment paper. Roll the dough into 1 inch balls and place onto the paper. Place the plate with the peanut butter balls into the freezer to chill. The time will vary depending on the freezer.
  3. After the balls are frozen in place the chocolate chips and coconut oil into a small bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds at a time, stirring and repeating until the chocolate is melted.
  4. Remove the peanut butter balls from the freezer and dip them halfway into the melted chocolate. Enjoy!The final product can be frozen for future outings or eaten right away. The combination of peanut butter and chocolate creates a creamy, nutty, and delectable bite. Fall treats can be easy to make, gluten free, and taste amazing!

Picture2The final product can be frozen for future outings or eaten right away. The combination of peanut butter and chocolate creates a creamy, nutty, and delectable bite. Fall treats can be easy to make, gluten free, and taste amazing!

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Pumpkin Muffins with a Spice

by Richa Chaturvedi ’18

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In an effort to test how yummy Buzzfeed suggestions really are, I spent my Friday afternoon making these pumpkin muffins!  Spoiler alert: never shall I doubt Buzzfeed again.

Pumpkin is always a tricky ingredient – it has an interesting consistency and tends to overpower everything else in the dish.  A basic rule of thumb for cooking with pumpkin is to enhance the flavor with the correct spice, but to make sure to incorporate more dynamic elements into the recipe so that pumpkin isn’t the only flavor. This is why I added chocolate chips to these muffins. Chocolate and pumpkin is actually an underrated combination, plus they look amazing together!

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The recipe also calls for pumpkin spice, which is just a combination of basic fall flavors: cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, and ginger. Since I’m a normal college student, I didn’t just have those lying around so I was very generous with cinnamon and vanilla extract. It still tasted great! The big takeaway from this is that recipes aren’t set in stone. As long as you have the basic chemistry down, you can take liberties to personalize and experiment with the dishes you create. After all, you’re the one eating them so it’s really up to you.

Above all else, don’t be scared to try new recipes and ingredients. I’m basically inept – there was a period of time in high school when I was banned from using the microwave due to an unfortunate aluminum foil incident – but I was committed to making myself something nice and pumpkin-y and, I’m not going to lie, I crushed it.  It’s helpful to remember that if you don’t make yourself chocolate chip and pumpkin muffins, then you won’t be able to eat chocolate chip and pumpkin muffins. With that inspiration, go forth! And happy fall from Crimson Crave.

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Make it yourself!

Ingredients: 

  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. pumpkin spice
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 1 (16 ounce) can pure pumpkin
  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 24 pumpkin-shaped candies

Directions: 

  1. Preheat oven to 350 °F. Line 24 muffin cups with paper or silicone liners and coat with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, pumpkin spice, and salt. Set aside.
  3. In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl with a whisk, combine eggs, sugar, oil, and pumpkin. Add the flour mixture in two batches, mixing after each addition until uniformly combined.
  4. Using a large cookie scoop, fill the muffin cups nearly to the top with batter. Bake about 25 minutes, rotating the muffin tins halfway through baking time, until a toothpick inserted in the middle of a muffin comes out clean with a few crumbs attached. Cool completely.
  5. While the muffins are cooling, in a large bowl, combine cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract until smooth. Frost muffins using a spatula or a pastry bag and piping tip of your choice. Top with pumpkin candies.

*Recipe courtesy of CulinaryHill.com.

Basia’s Scoop (#3: Christina’s)

by Basia Rosenbaum ’18

There is a Cambridge debate over ice cream: Toscanini’s vs. Christina’s. Central Square vs. Inman. Cocoa pudding vs. chocolate mousse (below left, along with cactus pear, right).

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A couple weeks ago I went to Toscanini’s, and this week I tried Christina’s.

Starting with location, Christina’s takes it. Just 10 minutes down the road from CGIS, I wondered why I didn’t go to Inman more often. Fun restaurants (including Punjabi Dhaba serving great cheap Indian food), cute shops, and a branch of the always amazing 1369 Coffee House.

Walk inside and Christina’s has a completely different vibe. Whereas Toscanini’s feels almost hipster—minimalist décor, flavors written in chalk, people coding over ice cream—Christina’s feels like an institution. This is not a shop designed to impress; rather meant to let the flavors speak for themselves.

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The range of flavors at Christina’s is impressive and there is an excellent combination of standard favorites with creative offerings. There’s maple walnut, black raspberry, rum raisin, and pistachio. But also Adzuki bean, banana cinnamon and Khulfi.

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Butter almond and peanut butter chip

Some of the flavors were amazing; some were less impressive. The butter almond was fantastic, but after a few bites I realized the peanut butter chip wasn’t one to order again. Cactus pear sorbet? Such an interesting option (and color). But while yummy initially, it was just too sweet and left me with a taste of pure sugar. The chocolate mousse is fantastic (better than Toscanini’s cocoa pudding in my opinion) and their chocolate chip cookie dough is great (as all chocolate chip cookie dough flavors are).

My best advice is to taste before you buy (and taste extensively). Depending on what flavor you order, you will leave with an entirely different impressive of Christina’s. Find the right flavors and this might be your favorite Cambridge ice cream.

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Chocolate chip cookie dough

You can also find Christina’s at the weekly Farmer’s Market in the Science Center. Albeit serving just a few options, the mobile Christina’s is great way to try the ice cream closer to campus.

Toscanini’s vs. Christina’s. I’d have to say that I come out of the side of Toscanini’s. But when we’re talking about good ice cream, why would we even have a debate? The more good ice cream options, the better.

Mug Meals

by Audrey Thorne ’19

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I have an excessive amount of mugs. I can’t help it. I love mugs. But it kind of seems like a waste to keep six mugs in my dorm room and only use one at a time for beverages, so I decided to challenge myself to make the most of my mugs by having a mug day. Four meals. Six mugs. A great alternative to real cooking.
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#1
Ingredients:
Water
Directions:
1. Put water in cup
2. Hydrate while cooking more complex mug meals
6#2
Ingredients:
Milk
Water
Hot coco mix
Optional: Marshmallows
Directions:
1. Add milk and water
2. Microwave for 2 minutes
3. Add coco mix
4. Mix
5. Add marshmallows
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#3
Ingredients:
2 eggs
1 tablespoon of milk
1 slice of American cheese
Directions:
1. Crack two eggs in a mug
2. Scramble eggs with fork
3. Add milk
4. Tear up slice of American cheese and add
5. Mix eggs, cheese, and milk
6. Microwave for 2 minutes
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#4
Ingredients:
One mugs worth of water
Amount of microwavable ramen to taste
Ramen mix
Directions:
1. Fill mug with water
2. Microwave for 3 minutes
3. Add ramen seasoning
4. Mix
5. Add ramen noodles
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#5
Ingredients:
One pack of Kraft easy mac
Water
Optional: little bit of milk or butter
Directions:
1. Add macaroni to mug
2. Add water
3. Microwave for 3.5 minutes
4. Add cheese powder
5. Mix
6. Add milk or butter
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#6
Ingredients:
1/3 box of brownie mix
1/5 cup oil
1 tablespoon of water
Optional: chocolate chips, 1 egg
Directions:
1. Add brownie mix, oil, water, an egg, and chocolate chips
2. Mix
3. Microwave for 3 minutes
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Our Favorite Foods from the 2015 Boston Local Food Festival

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Cheese steak dumplings with pastrami, bacon, kimchi and swiss cheese from Koy, 16 North Street, Boston MA
Chicken and Biscuits from the Granary Tavern, 170 Milk St, Boston MA
Chicken and Biscuits from the Granary Tavern, 170 Milk St, Boston MA
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Strawberry smoothies in cantaloupes from Singh’s Roti
Banana cake pop from Tia's Cakes and Pastries, Boston MA
Banana cake pop from Tia’s Cakes and Pastries, Boston MA
Apple pie cake in a jar from Tia's Cakes and Pastries, Boston MA
Apple pie cake in a jar from Tia’s Cakes and Pastries, Boston MA
Chocolate caramel cake jars from Tia's Cakes and Pastries, Boston MA
Chocolate caramel cake jars from Tia’s Cakes and Pastries, Boston MA
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Steem caffeinated peanut butter…one tablespoon has the equivalent of one 7oz. cup of coffee! Available online at steempb.com
A spread of seafood from Big Rock Oysters, 501 Depot St, Harwich, MA
A spread of seafood from Big Rock Oysters, 501 Depot St, Harwich, MA
Blueberry shortcake vegan ice cream from FoMu, 128 Arlington Street, Arlington, MA
Blueberry shortcake vegan ice cream from FoMu, 128 Arlington Street, Arlington, MA