Carls' Jr. Testing New Ice Cream Burger

5 More Frosty Food Fakers

 Highlights from Eating...Our Words

Wait, no, it's not an ice cream burger. It's a Brrrger. BRRRger. Jesus Christ.

Carl's Jr. is testing this confection in a few California locations and, yes, it looks ridiculous, but I also think I'm...jealous. I'd like to try it. I mean, I like a good ice cream sandwich just as much as anyone. (With just the right amount of ice cream: not too much so it squishes out everywhere, and not too cakey, you know...where you have to scrape the roof of your mouth afterward.) And, oh, how it's evolved.

Carl's Jr.'s Brrrger.
Carl's Jr.'s Brrrger.

The Brrrger is an ice cream sammy with sugar cookies as the bun, chocolate ice cream as the patty and ribbons of stoplight-colored icing as, I guess, lettuce (maybe pickle?), mustard and ketchup.

Food disguised as other food just tickles me. I myself am guilty of misrepresenting cupcakes as sliders. But Carl's' experiment got me wondering what other kinds of ice cream treats with savory facades are out there? In no particular order...

5. Ice Cream Corn

This Korean treat has a cake-cone-type exterior shaped like an ear of corn, and inside, corn/vanilla ice cream with a chocolate shell. Oh, and to drive the point home, there are corn kernels mixed in the ice cream. One brave taster who provided his thoughts online said it "sort of tastes like a popcorn jellybean," and another said it tasted like "soggy popcorn that fell on a pile of yellow snow."

4. Choco Taco

Klondike's Choco Taco might be the most familiar and the closest to the hearts of kids of the '80s. I had my first Choco Taco in high school at, of course, a Taco Bell. Consisting of a taco shell-shaped waffle cone and filled with vanilla ice cream, fudge and peanuts with a chocolate coating, this may have been my first exposure to food-that-looks-like-other-food, and responsible for my subsequent fascination.

3. Ice Cream Pizza

As far as toppings go, this is just like actual pizza — anything goes. M&Ms, Gummi worms, nuts, sprinkles of every shape, size and color, chocolate and/or peanut butter chips, whatever. Whatever your little heart desires. I came across a few recipes: one for pumpkin ice cream pizza, and, of course, in good artery-cloggin' fashion, Paula has a recipe for banana split brownie pizza (dear Lord). Pizza? Good. Ice cream? Good. This is the sweet (possibly sickeningly so) union of the two.

2. Ice Cream Baked Potato

My first question was "why?" But I suppose that could be the case for all of these things. Here we have a pint of vanilla ice cream heavily dusted with cocoa powder, topped with Cool Whip, a little yellow icing as the butter and crumbled pistachios for chives. It kinda looks like fun, but I could see this turning out very badly for me. I'd be as good at "molding ice cream into a potato shape" as I would be telling my cat to sit. Hate to say it, but I do love Cool Whip. Can I just have the Cool Whip?

1. Ice Cream Spaghetti

It looks like fun, and it's really big in Germany. Spaghettieis is a German ice cream specialty that looks like a plate o' pasta, developed in the '60s. Ice cream is pushed through a Spätzle press, placed on a little heap of whipped cream and topped with strawberry sauce that resembles tomato or marinara. Sometimes coconut flakes, grated almonds or white chocolate shavings are sprinkled on to mimic cheese. If you're like, "Holy crap, I need one now and I have $70 burning a hole in my pocket," you can get one online.

Poor, sad, regular old ice cream cone. It seems as though you're just not doing it for us anymore.

OIMBY Returns After a Two-Year Break

By Katharine Shilcutt

Outstanding in the Field dinners — meals which feature a tour of a local farm and food prepared by a master chef on the farm itself — are famously fabulous, but also notoriously expensive. And two years ago, a few Houston food lovers decided to do something about it: start their own.

Outstanding in My Backyard was born of the idea that you can have all of the benefits of an Outstanding in the Field dinner — local products prepared by talented cooks in a bucolic setting — without shelling out hundreds of dollars.

Soon, OIMBY had attracted a guest list of 100 people for its first dinner, which saw dishes prepared by Houston chefs such as Jonathan Jones, Justin Basye, Michael O'Connor, Hugo Ortega and the now Austin-based Plinio Sandalio.

The meal was only $40, with most of the food donated by places like Utility Research Garden and Revival Market — meaning that most of the ticket price went to charity.

Now, after a two-year hiatus, the backyard feast is being revived by one of Houston's local food pioneers: Monica Pope of t'afia.

Along with the help of the original two Houston foodies behind the project — David Leftwich and Tara Kelly, who donated their own backyard for the first dinner — Pope will be hosting the revived OIMBY nearly every Sunday at 5 p.m. in June and July. And this time, it'll be in Pope's own backyard.

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