Ice Cream Mecha

photo of haley joel osment from the movie AIHave I mentioned my love of the movie A.I, Artificial Intelligence? It is amazing, and so so so so so sad. If you don’t know the story, a couple whose son is in an irreversible coma adopt a robot boy who has been programmed to love. He bonds with the parents and they begin to be a family, until their biological son unexpectedly recovers.

The bio-sun comes home and he is a total little sneak and plays tricks on his robot brother, ultimately triggering a self defense mechanism that nearly kills them both. The mother, trying to prevent the destruction of her robot son, drives out into the woods and lets him go, saying, “I’m sorry I never told you what the world is like.” OMG IT IS SO SAD.

The robot, Henry, just wants to love. It is like the weird inversion of that video with the rhesus monkeys and they are clinging to the fake monkey mom and crying. EVEN SADDER.

But the Yaskawa-kun ice cream robot isn’t sad! It gives you ice cream! According to Eater:

Designed for kids, after making their selection on a touchscreen, the robot selects a cone, fills it with soft-serve, drizzles sauce over it, adds toppings, and passes it to them through a window, all while maintaining a perky smile.

Now I want to cry. And have some ice cream.

PS: Science!

Would You Like One Scoop of Jesus or Two?

Quote from the 4,000 word story in the Times about Humphrey Slocumbe ice cream:

Leah Rosenberg, an artist and a pastry chef, says, “The first time I tasted Jesus Juice sorbet, I felt like someone, at long last, understood me.”

Funnily enough, her art (above) kind of looks like ice cream–the review even says “It looks good enough to eat!”

Rise of the Targetocracy

Soon the developed world will have a new class division—those who have access to a decent Target store and those who don’t. We Target-challenged citizens will huddle in our generic clothing and poorly-designed cheap housewares, while the Targetocrats laugh in their Zac Posen clothes, sitting in their Liberty of London beach chairs, and eating their exclusive Ben and Jerry’s ice cream flavors.

—Snacktime, whose nearest Target is a 40 minute trip and by the time you get there the rest of Brooklyn has pawed through everything.

What Is and What Never Should Be

There’s a new place here in NYC that uses liquid nitrogen to instantly make you your own bespoke ice cream—you choose ingredients from a list that offers more than 10,000 combinations, according to Serious Eats. They do it via some scientific theatrics:

The ice cream base, along with spices, herbs, fruit, and anything you’ve selected, are poured into a pink Kitchenaid. Then they pour in the liquid nitrogen, a foggy mass, and in barely thirty seconds, ta-dah!

This seems like the foodie version of those places that ring a bell or play crazy music if you order “The Trough” or some other item that’s more about bragging than flavor, but it is not the most annoying thing about Lulu & Mooky’s liquid nitrogen ice cream—which, according to most Yelp reviewers and the Serious Eats writer, is not that good.

Here’s what gets me: one of the flavor options is “salt/garlic.” SALT GARLIC ICE CREAM. That is just… gratuitous. You might as well make ramp sorbet and put a “kick me” sign on your back.


I Scream

So, we started following some foodies on Twitter, you know, to become part of the community and also have fodder. Bad idea. After reading a post about someone making black pepper and veal stock ice cream—no, really—I foolishly clicked on its accompanying link. Why? What did I expect to find? A mother cow and her baby, not knowing that soon her milk and his congealed essence would soon be frozen together and ingested? (Yes, I am the vegetarian of the Foodie staff.)

However, what is worse than misguided meat eating is fucking with ice cream! There are 478,563,478,563,498,756 kinds of ice cream out there. At least. Throw in ice milk, sherbet, sorbet, soy ice cream, raw ice cream, rice ice cream and god knows what else, and you could probably eat a new flavor every day until you die. There is no need to make ice cream edgy.

And yet, here are recipes for such “innovative” flavors as bacon ice cream (if you are playing the SUF bacon drinking game, drink now), caviar ice cream,  and one flavor whose only ingredients are water, sugar, low-sodium soy sauce and orange zest. This sounds like something they would eat during the famine portion of The Good Earth.

Here is my ice cream recipe. On a hot day, go get a scoop of ice cream.