Key Ingredient

Southern Scoops of Ice Cream

Field-to-pint ice cream maven Jeni Britton heads south for summer inspiration

As Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream has grown and opened scoop shops across the country, we’ve gotten to know some incredible American cities. Familiarizing ourselves with the culture in each town is part of the fun for us. Every city is so uniquely different. We wanted to create flavors that reflect the taste of different regions we’ve gotten to know. Being able to share those stories with the rest of the country is something we’ve wanted to do for a long time.

That’s how the idea for our summer collection started. Then, it began to take on deeper meaning. From my perspective, our summer flavors are an effort to take back patriotism. In America, we work together. We are collaborative. We are scientists, artists, and farmers. We are united in ice cream. 

I realized that you can’t make ice cream without science, art, and agriculture. All those elements work together—they are its foundation. That, in addition to great American cities, is what we are celebrating. People from totally different places with unique talents and brains all working together to create  a stellar product. We think this is the perfect way to celebrate America—to show how these disciplines work together to create an amazing experience. 

ATLANTA: Peach Lassi Buttermilk Frozen Yogurt

We start with the most perfect, juicy Georgia peaches from the Peach Truck and blend them with organic yogurt for an almost custardy texture. Atlanta chef and cookbook author Asha Gomez inspired the addition of cardamom. Her cooking is so beautiful, so flavorful.

CHARLESTON: Sweet Cream with Peanuts and Molasses Curd 

Molasses is such a Southern thing and the sugar trade is a big part of Charleston history. I loved the idea of making a sugar custard using blackstrap molasses because it’s such a strong flavor. It’s one of those things that clashes with cream.

NASHVILLE: Yazoo Sue Ice Cream with Rosemary Bar Nuts 

We love working with like-minded people in the food and drink world, which is how we became friends with Linus and Lila at Yazoo Brewing Co. in Nashville. And how I came to try, and love, their cherry-wood smoked porter, Yazoo Sue. This flavor is every bit as satisfying as downing a cold beer and a basket of savory bar nuts at your favorite neighborhood bar. 

This story originally appeared in the May 2018 issue. 

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