I am not a huge fan of fusion… or, rather, I think it has its limits. For those masochistic souls who, like me, have read the inimitable American Psycho by Brett Easton Ellis, you will recall the intentional absurdities of the characters’ dinner menus. An integral attraction in the mad carnival that Ellis creates is the nightly $300 supper of increasingly absurd food pairings, culminating in my favorite, the Cilantro Cheesecake. For those of us foodies with a wicked sense of humor, the cache of these unappetizing meals lent a bit of levity to an otherwise grizzly novel.
But, as usual, I digress… the point is that it didn’t take the macabre humor of American Psycho to turn me off of fusion. I’m just a bit too traditional for all of the new-fangled stuff that kids these days are coming out with.
However, on our recent trip to Spain, PT and I enjoyed an exquisite Tasting Menu in Cordoba, and the dessert tray included a perfectly rounded ball of Sevilla Orange gelato, sitting in a pool of Andalucian olive oil. I like both of the components very much and PT assured me that it was sensational, but still, I eyed this combination warily as I tucked into the cinnamon flan.
Finally, I dug in, and it was magnificent. It was smooth, tart, and had a light aroma of the best quality olive oil. The taste was mild, with just a hint of the sharpness of the Sevilla oranges, but the texture was what one me over – perfect gelato smoothed by silken olive oil. Delicious.
And, the best part, is that it fits perfectly into the Entertaining Holy Trinity as a perfectly arranged dessert. Just drop a bit of olive oil into some shallow dishes, scoop in a citrusy gelato (or sherbert – I would avoid ice cream), add a few sprigs of mint, and you have a sophisticated, delicious, and unique dessert, and it’ll never cause you to break a sweat.
The one caveat of this dish is that all of the ingredients (save maybe the mint) have to be the absolute best quality, and don’t even think of using regular olive oil – it has to be extra virgin or nothing.
Blood Orange Gelato in Olive Oil with Mint, Serves 1 (Multiple according to your guest list)
3 Tbls. Best Quality Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
1 Scoop Blood Orange Gelato
3 Mint Leaves
Pour the extra-virgin olive oil into shallow bowls.
Place the scoop of gelato in the center.
Stick the ends of the mint underneath the gelato bowl and fan out.