Here in Chicago, adapting to the bright spring sun and warmer-than-normal weather hasn't been my biggest challenge! As summer awaits us all around the corner, my sweet tooth and I have been having an epic battle since early May. It has not been patiently waiting for the traditional "seasonal dessert cycle" to complete its rotation. Instead of cream pies and rich chocolate cakes, all I want during the work day is something cold. I am literally screaming for ICE CREAM!
While traveling throughout Europe expanding my knowledge of food and culture, I found that language barriers were nonexistent when it came to cold treats. Ice cream was a universal language that instantly bonded us all and brought on smiles. Sorbet, custard, gelato ... they all taste amazing to me. Flavors can be so creamy, sharp, or crisp. It is a true art to make pineapple sorbet actually taste like you are biting into a piece of juicy fresh pineapple from Hawaii.
My love for cold treats actually got me thinking a lot about pharmacy and its social history. I like to refer to that nostalgic period as the "soda fountain days." The pharmacy was a place in the community where we experimented with flavors and tried new things, where we met strangers and neighbors. Most importantly, it was a place where we bonded over delicious treats. It's those delicious treats that helped build the tradition and trust that are the foundation of what was and still is on almost every corner.
Today, practicing pharmacists might not have the time that our predecessors had. But, no one said we can’t encourage a few ice cream socials with our coworkers and patients every now and then! Employee morale and patient satisfaction are always guaranteed when the ice cream scooper makes an appearance!
Summer brings out the sweet tooth in all of us when we hear the sound of an ice cream truck coming around the corner. So take advantage of it to make yourself and the people around you smile.
Homemade Pineapple Sorbet
1/2 fresh pineapple (about 2 cups cubed)
4-8 tablespoons of sugar (the riper your pineapple, the less sugar you will need; also, feel free to adjust sugar to suit your sweet tooth)
1/2 cup of water
Squeeze of fresh lemon
Cut 1/2 fresh pineapple into cubes and place in a food processor or blender. Add the sugar, lemon juice, water and blend until smooth. Pour mixture into a covered freezer-safe container and freeze for at least 1-2 hours.
Remove the mixture from the freezer. Pour the pineapple mixture back into blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Once that is done, spoon the sorbet into the final container you wish to freeze it in. Put back into freezer and leave for 5 hours. Enjoy!
Note: To jazz it up a bit, save the shell of the pineapple by cutting the pineapple in half lengthwise and serve the sorbet in the half shells.