Pop Culture Ice Cream

If there is one thing in the world that comes close to my love of pop culture, it is my love of ice cream (what – did you think I was going to say family?). If I didn’t have some semblance of trying to take care of myself, I could eat ice cream absolutely every single day. As far as I’m concerned, it’s the perfect food – creamy, delicious and pretty much devoid of nutritional content. I am, after all, the girl who was watching Twitter to see where the new Cannoli ice cream could be found. I’ve been blessed with a cat that loves ice cream as much as I do, though I try not to let him have it (if you’ve met Pumpkin, you can imagine how successful that is). The fool even got his head stuck in an empty pint container when he was trying to be sneaky.

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I’m particularly partial to the ice cream stylings of Ben and Jerry’s. They have such fun and interesting flavors and I also am a fan of their corporate philosophy. I actually used to use Ben and Jerry’s as an example during my lecture on political economy back in my professorial days. I remember the first time my mom took me into the Ben and Jerry’s shop in Saratoga when I was a kid and I was just so overwhelmed by all the options that I asked for vanilla. Vanilla! All those amazing flavors and taste combinations and I picked the most boring of them all. Even chocolate would have been a better choice. It was good, of course, but far too conservative.

As I’ve gotten older and I’ve become more adventurous with my palate and have branched out to the many diverse offerings that Ben and Jerry’s has. My all-time favorite is still Chubby Hubby (Fudge Covered Peanut Butter Filled Pretzels in Vanilla Malt Ice Cream Rippled with Fudge & Peanut Butter), though I will mix it up with Cake Batter (Yellow Cake Batter Ice Cream with a Chocolate Frosting Swirl), Half Baked (Chocolate & Vanilla Ice Creams with Fudge Brownies & Gobs of Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough) and What a Cluster (Peanut Butter Ice Cream with Caramel Cluster Pieces, Marshmallow Swirls & Peanut Buttery Swirls), though I preferred the latter when it was called Clusterfluff. And you should see how excited I get when I stumble upon the seasonal Pumpkin Cheesecake flavor; since you never know where it will show up and when it will disappear, I’ve been known to buy up whatever is in stock.

One of my favorite things that Ben and Jerry’s does is that they offer some pop culture related flavors. I first became aware of this with Phish Food (Chocolate Ice Cream with Gooey Marshmallow Swirls, Caramel Swirls and Fudge Fish), but they have unveiled other flavors as well: Stephen Colbert was honored with the flavor Americone Dream (Vanilla Ice Cream with Fudge Covered Waffle Cone Pieces & a Caramel Swirl); Cherry Garcia (Cherry Ice Cream with Cherries and Fudge Flakes) was named after the great Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead;  John Lennon’s Imagine Whirled Peace (Caramel and Sweet Cream Ice Creams Swirled with Fudge Peace Signs and Toffee Cookie Pieces); Goodby Yellow Brickle Road (Chocolate Ice Cream, Peanut Butter Cookie Dough, Brickle Candy Pieces and White Chocolate Chunks), inspires by the Elton John Song;  Schweddy Balls (Vanilla Ice Cream with a Hint of Run and Loaded with Fudge Covered Rum and Malt Balls) inspired by this SNL sketch:

Fan of the sketch – not a fan of the ice cream. I couldn’t even finish the pint, which is saying a lot.

Unsurprisingly, my favorite of the celebrity flavors is Late Night Snack (Vanilla Bean Ice Cream with a Salty Caramel Swirl and Fudge Covered Potato Chip Clusters), inspired by Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. I’m a big fan of salty and sweet – see my love of Chubby Hubby – and there really isn’t anything better than chocolate covered potato chips. They promote the ice cream a lot during the show; many of the games that Jimmy plays with audience members involve Late Night Snack being dumped on a person or them sliding into it. I hate those games, as it is a waste of that tremendous ice cream.

Last night the Ben and Jerry’s Tumblr had a special announcement: a new celebrity flavor was going to be unveiled on Thursday.

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The new flavor would honor 30 Rock as it was going off the air after seven hilarious and wacky seasons. I’m embarrassed to say how excited I am to see what they come up with, not only for the ingredients but the name of the ice cream. Ben and Jerry’s have a lot of fun with the names that they come up with for their products and I’m curious what they will settle on to commemorate 30 Rock. I’m assuming that 30 Rocky Road is too obvious. Since the proclamation, I’ve been trying to come up with other possible ideas:

  • Liz Lemonade?
  • Dots-Com – something with dipping dots to honor my favorite member of Tracy’s entourage?
  • Tracy Jordan Almonds?
  • Something for Dennis Duffy, Liz’s reoccurring ex-boyfriend (played by the awesome Dean Winters)?
  • Something with Blerg in the title?
  •  Something to do with Dr. Spaceman? Please?

UPDATE: The Grub Street section on the New York Magazine website points out that in an episode of 30 Rock Tracy Jordan created his own Ben and Jerry’s flavor called Adultaraisin.

I’m glad that there are people cleverer than me working on this because I don’t know that any of these sound particularly tasty or are all that funny. The show has so many great characters and memorable jokes that they have a lot to work with. As for the ice cream, I just hope there is some fun stuff in it like caramel, peanut butter, some kind of dough or marshmallow in it. I really can’t wait to see what they come up with.

Got a clever idea for a 30 Rock inspired ice cream? Sound off in the comments below.

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