Chikoo Ice Cream with Cinnamon Rose Mintchip is made from a highly popular Asian and Mexican fruit. “Chikoo” is also a pet name for young kids, in many Gujarati households, including mine! The fruit is also known as sapodilla or zapota or sapota. A berry like fruit with dark black almond shaped seeds. Its skin is rough brown and the ripened flesh has a nice brown color. It is known for its sweetness and malty flavor, and this has been a favorite fruit of mine. The chance of getting to eat fresh chikoo that is nicely ripened is very slim in US. Even if I get some fresh chikoos, they do not ripen well. So in the twenty-five years that we left India, eating this favorite fruit has been a rare opportunity. Frozen chikoo slices have a sourness and so does the pulp of chikoo, with its dose of preservatives.
Casual wandering around a newly opened a grocery store , I spotted a Chikoo Pulp can, and was immediately excited to use that. If nothing else, I can have the popular chikoo milkshakes which have a flavor of the malted milkshakes, the older cousins of the current milkshakes. I always liked the grainy texture in this fruit which only recently I realized gave it a malted taste.
Now came the part of trying this in an ice cream. Naturals brand in Mumbai and many other local ice cream shops across Gujarat have this chikoo ice cream readily available, but they also have a dense taste of chikoo in it. I have primarily used only fresh fruits in my ice cream so this was a bit of challenge for me as to how reduce the taste of preservative in the ice cream? Not afraid to experiment, I let my creativity guide me. I decided to throw in some cinnamon to bring some fragrant sweetness, added rose essence for hiding the sourness on account of preservatives, and gave it the quintessential topping of chocolate mint chips to give it a texture and appeal similar to the popular ice creams! Not knowing how the combination is going to turn, I eagerly waited for the ice cream maker to churn and for the clock to turn full twenty four hours, for me to dig in a bite of my very own concoction!
I liked the pale pink color ice cream in which the brown mint chips were sticking out their sunny heads! The rose essence also aligned well with pink color of the ice cream. The freshness and cooling feeling of rose fragrance went well with the cinnamon sweetness . As you eat the ice cream, the first flavor that hits you is the rose essence, then you are introduced to the cinnamon flavor and finally you are left with the hint of the chikoo flavor. And if this is not exciting enough add, some toasted coconut chips were great as extra toppings!. You will probably say, this was worth my time and effort for being able to relish so many different flavors in a scoop of my favorite colored ice cream!
Chikoo Ice Cream with Cinnamon Rose Mintchip became a topic of conversation in a couple of different groups of parties, with this flavor being more popular amongst the westerners, as it was definitely a fruit that they were not aware of, but still appreciated the flavor and texture!