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Ice Cream Goes Kosher, and More

Is that rugelach in my scoop?

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(Margarita Korol)

Approximately 1.54 billion gallons of ice cream are produced in the Unites States annually, according to an International Dairy Foods Association spokesperson. “Every major brand you can think of has a kosher symbol on most (not all) of its products,” Rabbi Avrohom Gordimer, who oversees dairy product certification for OU Kosher, told me in an email. “A brief walk through the ice cream freezer aisle of any supermarket will testify to this.”

Now, kosher ice cream is getting a new face with Chozen, a Jewish sweets and holiday-inspired artisanal ice cream line that hit supermarket shelves this month with flavors like Matzoh Crunch, Coconut Macaroon, and Ronne’s Rugelach. (You’re probably thinking, didn’t I just see this today in that other daily Jewish magazine of life and culture? Yeah, well, Tablet Magazine tasted Chozen at its offices all the way back Monday afternoon. Just sayin’.)

Chozen is the brainchild of 62-year-old Ronne Fisher and her daughters, Isabelle, 34, and Meredith, 30. One evening in 2008, Ronne tells me, the family was doing a homemade mix-in of rugelach and vanilla, one of their typical culinary innovations. “We joked, ‘Wouldn’t it be delicious to just have ice cream with rugelach already in it?’” recalls Ronne. “‘Wouldn’t it be great to have sweet noodle pudding with ice cream, or potato pancakes with ice cream?’” (Let’s just stick with the rugelach for now!)

The company combines pastries from Green’s and other kosher bakeries in Brooklyn with ice cream produced at a kosher dairy in Ancramdale, New York, a small town near the Massachusetts border. Ronne Fisher drives a couple of hours to the dairy every other month. There she helps pour the delivered baked-goods into the churning vats of ice cream and labels the containers.

“I have never, let me say that again, never purchased processed desserts,” says Fisher. To determine which flavors Chozen would include, Ronne Fisher went to kosher markets and tasted hundreds of kinds of rugelach, babkas, macaroons, hamantaschens, and blintzes. “Invariably, I would taste something and then decide that I could make it better,” she says. The Fishers scoured kosher cookbooks for pastry ideas as well. “It’s not just about throwing a blintz or rugelach in vanilla ice cream,” says Fisher, “it’s about finding the essence of the rugelach.” Even if you don’t get a bite of rugelach in a given spoonful, for example, the ice cream itself should invoke that taste.

Fisher is at work refining Chocolate Babka and Apples and Honey ice creams, and is considering adding further new flavors down the road, including Chanukah Gilt, a milk-chocolate with edible gold sprinkles, and a halvah-flavored one.

For now, ice cream lovers in New York City who hunger for a taste of Passover can find Chozen at Garden of Eden, Pomegranate, and West Side Market. Come July 1, you can buy it online.

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It took me a few minutes to figure out the brand name. For some reason I kept reading it as chah-zin (more like chazir.)

michael says:

to imply that the NY Times is a jewish magazine is as absurd as saying that kapos were tzadikim. indeed, while kapos often did what felt they had to do to stay alive, the Times has no excuse for its failure to help prevent Jews from burning in Nazi ovens during the shoah and assisting obama in throwing israel under the bus. they are as jewish as they believe their anti-semitic friends will allow.

robyn says:

Cute, but Max & Mina’s out in Flushing has been doing flavors like these for years.

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baila says:

If you love ice cream you must try Zislick premium kosher gelato. It is located in Boro Park Brooklyn. (As a matter of fact kosherkouponz.com is running a coupon for them right now) Anyhow, they have flavors like ferrero rocher and chocolate whiskey (my personal favorite is napoleon- yes there are actual napoleon pieces in the ice cream.)
No, I do not work for them or own the store but I did enjoy it and do think anyone who trys it will as well.
bon apetite

I discovered this information earlier today while at work. Very useful. Sent the url to myself and will most likely bookmark it when I go back home.

Generally I do not read post on blogs, but I would like to say that this write-up very compelled me to try and do it! Your writing taste has been amazed me. Thanks, very great article.

For what its worth, the layout is absolutely incredible. You know how to balance writing and images/videos. Even so, I cant get over how little you really bring to light here. I feel that everyones said the same thing that youve said over and over once again. Dont you believe its time for some thing far more?

I’ve said that least 2086139 times. The problem this like that is they are just too compilcated for the average bird, if you know what I mean

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Ice Cream Goes Kosher, and More

Is that rugelach in my scoop?

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