Step 2: Delicious and unusual sundae topperz/ingz.
I come from "the more the better" sundae school of philosophy. I believe that vegan desserts should be glaring spectacles of deliciousness, so much so, they alarm and disarm omnivores with their delicious and voluptuous qualities. In the spirit of Psychodrama (hi mom--kiss kiss!), please to indulge me with a little vegan sundae role play so you know more of what I mean.
Here's the scene (picture a vegan chick tract):
(You: stuffed animal holdin', dairy eatin' omnivore)
(Me: wise "more the better" sundae school thinkin' vegan)
You: God. A vegan Sundae Social? This non-dairy ice cream is gonna suck hard.These are the scenes I like to create in real life. It's fun and rewarding, not to mention delicious, easy and oh yes, gluten-free!
Me: Are you talking to me? I'm a little distracted loading all of these fantastical things on top of my homemade root beer ice creamz. OMFG, I don't want to miss anything, this sundae is gonna be so great! I bet my pancreas'll hurt for a month!
You: Um. What sorts of things? I'm sure whatever they are, the ice cream'll still taste like tofu...
Me: Oh you know the regular stuff--buckeye balls, hot chocolate sauce, homemade marshmallow fluff, butterscotch sauce, jimmies, maraschino cherries, roasted peanuts, chopped up Chick-O-Stix, peanut butter rice crispy pinwheels filled with fresh strawberries, marshmallow fluff and buttercream then dipped in chocolate and covered with sprinkles, and some ripe bananas and more strawberries if you want.
You: Get the fuck out of my way, hippy!!! You'd best put that buckeye ball down, before it's the last ball you ever own. This is now my sundae bar, bitch!
Me: I am not a hippy!
I can't remember where I first learned about Buckeye Balls, but it could have something to do with going to college in Ohio, probably. Anyway, BBs are generally small balls of sweetened peanut butter that are dipped in chocolate and then popped into your mouth over and over again. I like the addition of rice crispies to the peanut butter mixture, because the crunch is unparalleled. If you temper your chocolate first, these will harden at room temperature--but even so, I prefer to eat them out of the freezer.
Buckeye Balls (makes about 36 mini balls)
- 1 cup natural crunchy peanut butter (with salt)
- 1/2 cup vegan powdered sugar
- 1 cup rice crispy type cereal
- 1 bag semi-sweet chocolate chips
Melt all but 1/3 cup of the chocolate chips--either in a bowl in the microwave, or in a double boiler. Once the chocolate is melted, remove from heat and stir in the remaining chips. Stir with a spoon until all is melted (stirring in the non-melted chips actually tempers the chocolate).
One by one, dip the peanut butter balls in the chocolate (I like to use a fork and a spoon to help me do this, but you could also use a toothpick). Place back on the parchment and allow to set.
Butterscotch Sauce: Makes a small jarful.
- 1 cup unbleached granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon molasses
- 3/4 cup non dairy cream (blend 1/2 cup soymilk with 1/4 raw cashews until smooth)
- 2 tablespoons Earth Balance or vegan margarine
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Chocolate Sauce really doesn't even need a recipe... Simply heat up a cup of non-dairy milk over medium heat. Add 2 tablespoons of unbleached granulated sugar and enough chocolate chips (about 2 cups or a bit more) to make a very thin ganache or sauce. Serve warm over the sundaes, but also store in a sealed container in the fridge (it will thicken when cool).
Marshmallow Fluff can be purchased, made or whipped up from a kit. Smuckers makes a chemical-ful, but vegan fluff and there is something called Ricemellow that abounds, though I've never had the opportunity to try it.
Jimmies (or sprinkles or hundreds-and-thousands) are my favorite thing to eat on top of coffee ice cream, they make for very happy sundaes, too. I have very, very fond memories of dousing my ice cream from the hot fudge bar at Roy Roger's with them, very heavily. Lieber's makes a big jar of confectioner's glaze-free jimmies, which can be procured in kosher groceries, and you can also find organic and vegan Sprinkelz at natural food places (they have chocolate, too ).
Chick-O-Stick, make great sundae toppers too, especially if you can't procure any of the above mentioned jimmies, or if you're paying extra special attention, and want to go super sundae spazzy like me. So easy. Buy some COS, place in the food processor, and hit GO. I found these weirdly shapped spherical COS in boxes at the drugstore. Good to know for Halloween, as they come individually wrapped, but they all work.
Behold the magic orange powder, it's worth more than crocus stamen.
For my birthday party, I wanted to add something REALLY special to the sundae bar, and someone suggested rice crispy pinwheels, so I ran with it. I made two kinds, one filled with bi-colored buttercream, and the other with the buttercream, marshmallow fluff and very ripe sliced strawberries. Of course, I dipped half of each in chocolate and then covered the melted bits with jimmies, y'know, for a fanciful glow.
Chocolate Dipped Peanut Butter Rice Crispy Pinwheels (filled with buttercream, marshmallow fluff and strawberries)
Makes enough for 25 people (2 full cookie sheets worth)
- 1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
- 1 cup corn syrup or brown rice syrup
- 1 cup natural peanut butter, smooth or crunchy
- 7-9 cups rice crispy type cereal
- parchment paper
- 1 recipe buttercream of your choice (I tinted a batch in two colors)
- 2-3 cups marshmallow fluff
- sliced strawberries
- Tempered chocolate chips
- In a large saucepan, combine the brown sugar and syrup. Cook over medium high heat until the sugar dissolves and the mixture just begins to boil. Remove from heat.
- Stir in the peanut butter and mix well to incorporate.
- Stir in the cereal, mixing until it is evenly coated. You may need to add more cereal to get the right consistency. You don't want the mixture to be too gooey.
- While warm, press the mixture out onto parchment paper forming a rectangle about 12"X16". Then cut the rectangle in half, to make two measuring about 12"X8". Set one aside.
- Carefully spread one rectangle with buttercream, or buttercream and marshmallow fluff, adding strawberries if you want (see photo below).
- Allow to cool just enough, so the cereal doesn't come apart when you start to form the roll. Using the parchment to help you roll, form the rectangle into a tight cylinder, jelly roll style. Wrap tightly in the paper to keep shape, and freeze for ten minutes to firm up. Meanwhile, repeat with the other half.
- Slice the cylinder into circles 1/2-3/4" inch thick and lay on a parchment lined sheet.
- As you fill up the sheets, chill or freeze what you've cut, to keep things cold.
- Dip each pinwheel in melted tempered chocolate (see Buckeye Ball recipe above for directions), then spoon jimmies on top of the melted chocolate.
Other sundae topping stuff that should be too easy to mention, but here I go anyways: Maraschino cherries (you can find ones without red dye at Whole Foods), crumbled cookies, roasted peanuts or candied nuts (pralines or candied hazelnuts), and more sliced strawberries and banana wedges (for mini banana splits).