Friday, December 6, 2013
Next time you make crab cakes, instead of topping the dish with a remoulade why not try something a little cooler – say, a cucumber lime sorbetto?
The Gelato Fiasco in Brunswick has teamed up with Whole Foods Markets in the North Atlantic states to develop a line of sorbettos that pair well with seafood. The “Coastal Collection” is sold in the seafood section of Whole Foods stores and includes five flavors.
Cucumber Lime Cilantro Sorbetto pairs well with salmon, crab cakes or chilled soup.
Horseradish Sorbetto and Hot Sauce Sorbetto (made with Tabasco) pair well with raw oysters or little neck clams. (That's the hot sauce sorbetto on a Maine oyster below.)
Pure Lemon Sorbetto pairs well with crab cakes, raw oysters or little neck clams.
Spicy Passion Fruit Sorbetto, a sauce with a cayenne kick, pairs well with Maine haddock, salmon, fish chowder or chilled soup.
Joshua Davis, co-owner of Gelato Fiasco, told me the new products had a quick turnaround time. Matt Mello, regional seafood buyer for Whole Foods, first approached Davis in March, and the products went on the shelves just last Friday.
“He was saying that down there (in Boston) a lot of restaurants have been pairing sorbets with oysters, and he saw an opportunity that that might work well with their customers,” Davis said. “So he asked what I thought, and whether we’d ever done anything like that, and in fact we’ve always done savory stuff in our cases.”
Davis said he and his staff dug through Gelato Fiasco’s recipe archives and found a list of 25 flavors they’d either made before, or considered making, that might work well with seafood.
Then the staff went to work in the Gelato Fiasco kitchen.
“We did do a lot of tasting of oysters, which was fun,” Davis said. “And the horseradish one was extra fun to make. To grate all the horseradish we needed to fill the order, everyone was wearing safety goggles. I don’t know if you’ve ever grated 200 pounds of horseradish before. It’s quite an undertaking, and was quite pungent in the kitchen.”
Davis then took a selection of flavors down to Boston, where Whole Foods staff tasted them and chose their favorites. The deal was done the same day.
Here's a Maine oyster topped with the cucmber lime sorbetto:
The sorbettos can now be found in 12-ounce containers ($4.99 each) in the seafood departments of Whole Foods stores in Maine, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut.
Whole Foods has come up with some suggested pairings of the sorbettos with the store’s own seafood products.
You can pair the lemon or the spicy passion fruit sorbetto, for example, with Whole Foods’ Mango Coconut Pepper Mahi Mahi Filet. The horseradish or cucumber lime cilantro is suggested for the store’s Wasabi Soy Salmon.
The sorbettos, of course, can also be served between courses, but doesn’t this idea just make you want to fire up the grill for some summer seafood deliciousness?
(Photos courtesy of Gelato Fiasco)
Meredith Goad has harvested oysters on the Chesapeake Bay, eaten reindeer in Finland and sipped hot chai in the Himalayas. She writes the weekly Soup to Nuts column and enjoys a good cocktail.
Susan Axelrod's food writing career began in the kitchen; she owned a restaurant and catering business before turning to journalism more than a decade ago. To relax, she bakes, gardens and hikes with her husband and their two dogs. A newcomer to Portland, she is an online content producer for the Press Herald.
Susan can be contacted at 791-6310 or saxelrod [at] pressherald.com.
On Twitter: @susansaxelrod