Sunday non-Sundae

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Today I had all intentions of getting a wonderful sundae from the Courier Cafe, an old fave of mine: great food, historic venue, dazzling sundae choices – why have I never had a sundae here before??!!?!

All set to order. Didn’t even have lunch yet! Really saving room! Imagine my astonishment and disappointment to learn that they only have vanilla ice cream as an option (is it even considered an “option” at that point?) – which is of course why I’ve never had a sundae here. (listen: I just don’t like vanilla ice cream. Example: if pie a la mode is on the menu, I’ll order pie a la by itself. Also, so many other great ice creams to complement pie: cinnamon or pecan or even maple come to mind….)

Here’s a question: what is the point of a 3 scoop banana split if all 3 scoops of ice cream are the same flavor? Another question: how hard is it to offer just *one* more flavor, um let’s say, chocolate? Answers: 1) No point. 2) Not hard. (fyi: these questions were politely asked IRL as well)

And so I ordered my Courier go-to: a chocolate phosphate (highly recommended!!!!), which was foamy and delicious as always, yet the foam was fizzled a bit by my sundaeless tears (jk jk I held it together, mostly). 

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Sunday Sundae! Top o’ the mornin’ to ya!

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What a lovely day for a pint….which is basically what I had since my sundae amounted to three huge scoops!

Feeling sunny and brisk, and not in the slightest weighed down by a massive pile of onion rings from Hackney’s, I did a jig over to Cone, a relatively new Irish ice cream shop in the West Loop. (fyi: those two establishments are not actual jigging distance from each other – please drive).

Hair of the Dog sundae: scoops of Bailey’s ice cream, Jameson ice cream and Irish Hangover ice cream (cinnamon swirl with cinnamon toast crunch and bacon), topped (and bottomed) with thick, fudgy chocolate sauce, homemade whipped cream, sprinkled with chocolate flake, and finished with requested cherries, because, you know…..

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Walk up to the ice cream window or order from the fast-moving line inside, and then relax in the outdoor garden… ahh….

Coming back for : cookie cones, waffle cones, pretzel cones….. blueberry cream cheese or corn on the cob or spicy chocolate raspberry or coconut cream pie ice creams….. a smattering of Irish imported candies and treats…… yesssss….. this must be the end of the rainbow!

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Lick me, I’m Irish! (Cone said it, not me!)

Sunday Sundae: VIP DIY edition

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What’s better than an ice cream cone at a ballgame? A helmet sundae. What’s sadder than your team losing? The sundae cart passing you by.

Luckily, I have a top secret inside connection at the Chicago White Sox, and was granted an all-access pass to the DESSERT STORAGE ROOM to make my own helmet sundae! Thassright.

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The blessed White Sox dessert angels stopped everything to open their pearly ice cream gates for yours truly. Generous with portions, efficient with clean-up, understanding of the magnitude of the situation.

Sundaes featured: caramel sauce, chocolate sauce, M&M’s, crushed peanuts, whipped cream, sprinkles and a cherry on top. I’ll call this sundae the “9th Inning Miracle.”

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And then three Elvises parachuted onto the field from the sky.

Sunday Sundae!

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Good ol’ Jarling’s Custard Cup – cooling off central Illinois since 1949! (and their prices are refreshing too!) Open only in the summers, they have vanilla, chocolate, strawberry or lemon frozen custard every day with a special flavor of the week too.

Today’s arrangement: a waffle basket sundae with a ‘dip’ (scoop) of this week’s featured flavor: coconut, topped with their specialty: cold fudge (because it doesn’t melt the custard – genius!), whipped cream, pecans and a cherry. All this for under $5. Oh Illinois, sometimes I can’t complain.

My sundae tasted like an Almond Joy (sans almonds, avec pecans). The cold, sweet, milk chocolaty fudge creamily swirled into the top of the smooth coconut custard (no pieces of coconut). Eaten at an outdoor bench surrounded by sticky children and college kids packing on their freshman 15.

Pro tip: they have a drive-thru and there are also 3 lines at the indoor counter even though it may look like a chaotic swarm. Try for the middle line – people coming in from the side doors don’t always realize it exists!

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Jarlings Custard Cup Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Sunday Sundae!

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Sunday Sundae brought to you by Chicago ice cream institution: Margie’s Candies! Don’t be fooled by the name and think you can only get candy here. You can also get ice cream, and when you do, it comes in a giant clamshell bowl!!

Sundae choice: the Terrapin. Two scoops of ice cream (coffee and New York cherry chosen), covered with butterscotch sauce, whipped cream and nuts, then topped with a cherry and a housemade turtle, and served with your own gravy boat of hot fudge. (bananas added for extra nutritional value)

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Some things to know about Margie’s:

  1. It was originally called the Security Sweet Shop when it opened in 1921, but after the original owner handed the business down to his son, he renamed it “Margie’s” for his high school sweetheart.
  2. Prepare for there to be a line. And prepare for the wait to be worth it. (if you get too antsy, go to the Green Eye for a beer or Arturo’s for some queso fundido)
  3. Margie’s really blew up after the Beatles stopped by in 1965 and ordered a bunch of Atomic sundaes with a bunch of girls. Also, if you want to get extra Chicago, Al Capone had his treats here too.
  4. Margie’s is all for smart kids: you get a free cone if you get an ‘A’ on your report card, and if you can pull yourself together and turn that ‘C’ into an ‘A,’ you’ll get a free banana split!
  5. While their displays may look a bit dated, their chocolates are fresh and handmade. Get the Terrapin sundae (above) to sample a free turtle with your sundae. See? You can have your ice cream/candy and eat it too!

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Margie's Candies Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Sunday Sundae!

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Waffle Brownie Sundae: brownie batter poured into a waffle iron with ice cream, whipped cream and hot fudge on top. Better late than never, but why didn’t this happen in my life sooner??!? Thank you, 101 Coffee Shop, for giving me a new use for this shamefully underused appliance, and helping me keep my bikini body beach-ready.

(pictured below: pie with pie cutter! not pictured: side of fries)

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sundae research

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@dessert.oasis

We were doing sundae research yesterday. What makes a sundae? How can it be elaborated/deconstructed? Is a cherry always involved? And so on.

@dakotabertrand

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@dakotabertrand

Let’s dig into this!

To better understand what “technically” makes a sundae,  we’ll need some abridged historical tidbits. There is much debate over who actually invented the sundae, but basically there were some crazy laws in place in the late 1800s that forbade the serving of soda on Sundays. How were people supposed to have a sweet treat after churchtime on a lazy Sunday afternoon?!? So soda jerks sneakily obeyed the law and just served all the ingredients normally found in an ice cream soda sans soda. Those ingredients included: ice cream, your syrup of choice, and whipped cream.

Then, one Sunday in 1892, a soda jerk/pharmacist wanted to get fancy and impress a local minister, so instead of serving him the usual bowl of plain vanilla ice cream, he whimsically dumped a whole bunch of cherry syrup and candied cherries on top. Everyone loved it and even gave the dish the very original name of “Cherry Sunday.” From then on, cherries (at least one) were added to fancy ice cream dishes.

So, what makes a sundae? (which, ps, is called ‘sundae’ bc no one wanted to offend god and eat ‘Sunday’ – how blasphemous and rude!) A sundae is, at its most basic, ice cream, some kind of syrup (chocolate/fudge/caramel/fruit/etc), whipped cream and a cherry. But personally, I really think you need to add at least one other topping, be it nuts or sprinkles or candy or fresh fruit or whatevs, to take it to optimum sundae status.

Elaboration: serve yourself as many scoops of ice cream with whatever you want piled on top. Call it a kitchen sink or a dumptruck (yum/gross).

Deconstruction: astronaut ice cream injected with chocolate syrup-infused whipped cream and a balloon filled with cherry air to inhale at the end?

Let’s discuss further over sundaes on a Sunday. Hit me up on IG.

@dessert.oasis

Have a dessert question?  Email me at courtneysconza@gmail.com – from funnel cakes to fondue fountains, if it has sugar, I’ve probably eaten it.