I may not be an ice cream person, but once the weather in Germany starts looking like summer I always find myself at the ice cream shop. And it’s all because of Spaghettieis, a German specialty that I insist you try if (when!) you ever visit the country.
So what is Spaghettieis? Well, as the German word Eis refers to ice cream, I’ll give you just one guess. That’s right. It’s ice cream made to look like spaghetti. The picture on the left shows a classic Spaghettieis with vanilla ice cream shaped like noodles on a bed of cream, strawberry sauce to take the place of tomato sauce, and either coconut or nut chips on top to resemble the parmasion cheese. Even if I didn’t find the concept so funny I would love it—it’s a tasty combination.
I first encountered Spaghettieis when I was 16. I’d come to Germany with my high school German class for a month-long exchange. Our teacher told us about Spaghettieis, and I gave it a try. Delicious! Hilarious! After that I ate it at every chance I got (which, during our last week in Germany, turned out to be every day). It was cheap (you got 2 DM to the dollar back then), it was tasty, it was novel, and it was responsible for at least half of the ten pounds I put on during our stay.
Ice cream shops use a machine to press the vanilla ice cream into the shape of noodles, but you can do the same at home with a noodle press. It was invented in 1969 by Mannheim resident Dario Fontanella. Rumor has it that there were kids reduced to tears by a plate of Spaghettieis. (“But mama I wanted ice cream not a bowl of pasta!”) And because he didn’t want to pay 900 euros for the patent, the idea remained unprotected.
Though the weather hasn’t exactly been summery the past few days, this afternoon I could be found at the ice cream shop, contemplating which Spaghettieis to order. There was the classic, there was Carbonara (with liquor sauce and nuts), Forest (with a pile of red fruits on top), and Bonita (with chocolate sauce and banana slices). I ordered a classic and it was delicious. I can only hope the idea someday catches on in the States.