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Frozen confections topic of monthly potluck dinner

By Staff | Sep 2, 2015

Pinocchio’s Owner Donna Puma shared some frozen confection desserts during the monthly Community House Potluck Dinner last week, which included a Tuscan Gelato Cake. MEGHAN McCOY

The Community House was packed Wednesday night full of individuals who wanted to hear special guests Tom and Donna Puma, the owners of Pinocchio’s, talk about frozen confections, as well as taste some of the sweet treats during the monthly Potluck Dinner.

The presentation was geared towards “Have Fun with Your Frozen Confections,” which included a brief history of ice cream and the various frozen confections one can taste.

Audience members were given recipes for the winter, spring, summer and fall.

Donna said the recipes are great for people coming over for dinner or family functions when something different for dessert is desired.

“Instead of just scooping it in a bowl, (here’s) some insight and ideas of what you can do to jazz it up a little bit,” she said.

Pinocchio’s Owner Donna Puma shared some frozen confection desserts during the monthly Community House Potluck Dinner last week, which included a Tuscan Gelato Cake. MEGHAN McCOY

Some of the recipes included a Tuscan Gelato Cake a chocolate hazelnut and fruit version for the spring; frozen pate choux, holy cannoli and holiday gelato truffles for winter; watermelon sherbet slice and sundae brunch key lime frozen yogurt smoothie shots for summer and mission fig gelato pie with balsamic glaze and brie or gingersnap cookie bowls with pumpkin gingersnap ice cream for the fall. The audience had an opportunity to taste test many of the recipes during the potluck dinner.

Before the presentation began, Donna shared with the attendees that the center piece on everyone’s table was for the individual who had the closest birthday to Aug. 26. The present contained a gift certificate for the individual’s favorite frozen dessert.

Tom shared that ice cream typically contains milk or cream sweetened with sugars. He said the Chinese made a dessert with milk and rice that was placed in a pot surrounded by snow that was mixed with salt. The salt was used to melt the snow, which drew heat from the pot causing it to freeze.

The Arabs, Tom said had a long history of ice cream. Their frozen dessert had rose water with dry nuts and fruits.

It was not until the Quakers brought ice cream recipes to the colonies that Americans tasted the dessert. He said the treat was brought to the northern colonies because they had a lot of ice.

“It became very popular throughout the colonies,” he said, especially with founding fathers George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin. “Thomas Jefferson published a recipe for ice cream.”

In the 1840s a hand cranked ice cream machine was invented. Such ingredients as milk, cream, sugar and packed ice and ice water were used. Tom said it took about an hour or so to get a pint, or quarter of ice cream.

In the 1800s the commercial production of ice began, which resulted in the development of insulated ice houses. He said huge pieces of ice were carved from frozen lakes and stored in the insulated barns.

“They would use it and sell it as needed,” Tom said. “That made producing ice cream a lot easier.”

Due to the availability of dairy farms having left over milk, many of the farmers created ice creameries on their property.

In the 1920s, the development of ice cream machines became more advanced.

Tom’s presentation also touched upon the different types of ice cream before the audience had a chance to taste some of Pinocchio’s desserts.

He said ice cream has to have at least 10 percent milk fat or butter fat. The more fat that is used the richer the ice cream.

“The ideal percentage is 14 percent,” Tom said.

Gelato, which is based out of Argentina and Italy is not regulated by the FDA in the United States. He said the tasty treat has less butter fat and air, but has more sugar.

Frozen custard was invented in New York and frozen yogurt was made popular in the 1980s. The frozen yogurt, Tom said, has very little or no fat, but a lot of sugar.

Soft serve ice cream was invented in 1934 after a gentleman’s truck broke down and he began selling the ice cream. He said soft serve is the low fat version of ice cream.

Donna said Pinocchio’s, which has 130 flavors, is launching another new one on Oct. 1 called Berrywinkle on Periwinkle. She said the flavor was the result of a Facebook contest.

Pinocchio’s is located at 362 Periwinkle Way. For more information, visit www.pinocchiosicecream.com.

Follow Meghan @IslanderMeghan on Twitter.