The Disappearing Brownie Sundae, March 2005
Learning to cook isn’t just about the mechanics of roasting, sauteing, and chopping, but rather the entire experience, from finding the recipe to sitting down and eating the meal. Cooking is all about enjoyment. In the “Edible Memories” series, I will share with you some of my favorite cooking and dining moments – both the good and the ugly.They are what give me inspiration to go back to the kitchen every single day.
This weekend I am gallivanting off to Nantucket for a weekend with three of my best girlfriends from college. The use of the word gallivant is correct, as I’m sure there will be copious amounts of coffee, wine, and laughter consumed.
These three girls are aspiring foodies in their own rights. Whether they are learning to cook this summer, are an amazing baker, or frequently put my wealth of food knowledge to shame, they are some of my favorite people to share a meal with. And a fancy cocktail or two. But even more than 3 am pizza runs or Sunday morning brunch in the dining hall, there is one meal in particular that defines our friendship.
The Double Trouble Brownie Sundae.
Sophomore year we decided to spring break in Mexico. We were 19, flying high on the fact we no longer had to introduce ourselves as “freshmen” and that our “Rock the Loud House” Orientation T-Shirts (that call out our graduation year in neon orange) no longer had to be hidden in the back of our drawers. We had, in fact, deemed that we were “so college” that it may be questionable whether Acapulco could handle us.
We drove down to Washington DC to spend one night with Jamie’s family, since flights out of Dulles were much cheaper than the snowy Syracuse airport, and that night we got dressed up for a night on the town. Which, for four 19 year olds without fake IDs, meant Cosi.
The Cosi in Bethesda is unlike the chain versions I grew to know well while living in New York. This one offers cozy chairs, a fire place, and even waiter-ed table service to provide me with all of my salad and panini needs. We had already had some take out and 3 Red Bulls on the drive to the city, so dessert was on everyone’s mind.
We ordered the Double Trouble Brownie Sundae.
Not just a brownie sundae, but a brownie and a blondie, blanketed by slowly melting vanilla bean ice cream, topped with heavenly, creamy whip and that delightful cherry that really makes a sundae everything its meant to be.
The waiter delivered our sundae and 4 spoons. We all looked at the bowl of warm, gooey amazing. That’s when the tactics began.
If I remember correctly, I instantly took my spoon and went right for the middle of the bowl. That is where the most warm, gooey brownie would be, and I much prefer the melty ice cream over the frozen layers above. Alissa went right for the blondie, savoring her favorite of the two. Lauren works from the outside in. And Jamie just went for the gold wherever her spoon could fit.
Put four girls around one glorious brownie sundae and you’re going to have trouble. Because one sundae is clearly not enough for four people, especially four caffeinated teenagers who are about to embark on the spring break of their lives. It didn’t matter if a skirt was splattered with cream, if a spoonful was missing some cream with the brownie, or vice versa. The goal was to get dessert into your mouth.
Nobody talked. It was all spoons go.
30 seconds later, the waiter came back to check on how we were doing. We were already sitting back, bowl empty, cherry stem floating in the bare remains of melted vanilla and cream. Please, we weren’t so desperate as to lick the bowl (…in public).
“So…I guess you guys liked it,” he said with a mixture of shock and awe.
Since that night we have had detailed discussions about how we wish we had had a stopwatch during that epic dessert. There is no way it took us more than literally 30 seconds to consume 2 brownies and 3 scoops of ice cream. It is a meal that will forever be talked about and will continue to be a defining event in our friendship. Because as those precious seconds slipped away, we were all working as one to eat the best dessert ever. There was no fighting, no battling of spoons. We were the YaYa’s of Brownihood. Sisterhood of the Disappearing Sundae.
And still are to this day. Because best friends are those you can share a dessert with and everyone gets their fill. And I won’t let them get away.