Serious Eats: Recipes
Scooped: Duck Fat Caramel Soy Sauce Ice Cream
There are desserts where subtlety is what counts. Where faint accents of flavors and delicate ingredients softly win the day. This, friends, is not one of them.
This is caramel, nearly burnt, taken to its darkest extreme. It's melt-in-your mouth duck fat, buttery, savory, and sweet all at once. And it's the bracing punch of soy sauce, salty enough to cut through all the sweetness and electrify the palate. It demands a love for savory desserts and duck fat. If you're not that type, it's not too forgiving.
But if this sounds like something up your alley, you can look forward to what may be the richest caramel you will ever eat. Besides adding complex flavor, the duck fat lets the caramel linger on the tongue long after the ice cream is gone. Soy sauce works surprisingly well with caramel, drawing out its buttery qualities.
It's hard to have more than a scoop at a time, so try cutting it with some pound cake or baked apples; the ice cream melts all too readily into sauce. The bottom line here? We get one life to live, and it's too short to not act out on wild impulses from time to time. This over-the-top ice cream doesn't take prisoners, and it won't kill you softly. But I wouldn't want it any other way.
About the authors:
Ethan Frisch is the chef and co-mastermind behind Guerrilla Ice Cream. He's traveled around the world (30 countries, 5 continents) and worked as a pastry chef and line cook in some of NYC's great (and not so great) restaurants. He currently lives in London, where he really misses New York City tap water.
Max Falkowitz writes Serious Eats' weekly Spice Hunting column. He's a proud native of Queens, New York, will do just about anything for a good cup of tea, and enjoys long walks down the aisles of Chinese groceries.