Puopolo’s Dessert Menu Foundation Principles
One of the foundation stones of Puopolo’s, based on our patriarch, Jean Rose (aka Mama Puopolo), was her love of food. Whenever you visited Mama Puopolo you were always welcome at her table and were offered something delicious to eat. Of course, while eating you would frequently hear the popular Italian phrase “Mangia, Mangia” meaning to ‘eat up’. This is one of the many ways Mama-Puopolo showed love to those around her. So, in establishing Puopolo’s Italian Ice and Creamery it was important that we create a menu that showcased some of the best [Italian] desserts, The best ice cream, the best Italian Ice (Water Ice), the best Gelato, and the most unique Signature Strati’s, while preserving the highest levels of quality for our customers. In a small way, it is how we pay homage to Mama-Puopolo! We frequently think about her as we are preparing and/or serving our customers and love to see our customers thoroughly enjoy their desserts. In fact, you might even hear Kris’ daughter encourage patrons to “Mangai, Mangia” from time-to-time at Puopolo’s store, same as Mama-Puopolo used to do.
Puopolo’s Dessert Options
Puopolo’s dessert options can be categorized into 3 primary areas:
• Homemade Italian Ice (a.k.a. Water Ice)
• Authentic Gelato (Italian Ice Cream)
• Unique Signature Strati’s.
In creating Puopolo’s menu it was just as important to be unique in our offering, as it was to provide the highest quality ingredients. This is what makes Puopolo’s the best ice cream store in Tulsa, and also the best ice cream store in Oklahoma.
Homemade Italian Ice
Our Italian Ice (Water Ice) has a smooth and creamy texture ~ similar to a sorbet ~ as there is nothing quite like it. That’s because the process to make Italian Ice (Water Ice) is the same as making ice cream, that being, the use of a batch freezer. Puopolo’s uses the traditional ‘old school’ flavors and recipes from historic Philadelphia when making our Italian Ice. As a result, the benefits result in a smooth and creamy texture that you will not find in snow cones, shaved ice, or Italian Granita’s. Some of the other benefits of Puopolo’s Italian Ice include:
• NO Fat
• NO Dairy (except on Fudgy Wudgy)
• NO Gluten
• NO Cholesterol
Here is a brief history lesson in the creation of Italian Ice:
In the days of Italian Emperor Nero, Sicilian granita made from large blocks of ice from Mount Etna’s frozen peaks became the frozen fruit treat we enjoy today. Names of this frozen confection and preferences in consistency vary for texture, flavors and sweetness in different regions and countries. New Yorkers enjoy an icy treat that is smoother than a granita, but still semi-solid, whereas in Philly, it is less-firmly set (not as hard frozen) making it softer than sorbet and smoother than granita.
Question: Why is it Called “Water Ice” in Philadelphia?
As stated in the history of Italian Ice (above), names of this frozen confection and preferences in consistency vary for texture, flavors and sweetness in different regions and countries. Because in Philadelphia it is less-firmly set and slightly slushy – softer than sorbet and smoother than granita…is most likely where the term “Water Ice” got its name.
So, what’s is the difference between a Snow Cone, Shaved Ice, Granita and Sorbet? The difference is in HOW it is made! For example:
- Shaved Ice & Snow cones: Flavorings are poured on top of crunchy ice. This is why the flavoring seeps to the bottom leaving you crunchy ice on top, and soupy flavoring on the bottom.
- Granita: The flavoring is blended into more granular ice. Better consistency than a Snow Cone or Shaved Ice, but not as refined as Philly Style Italian Ice.
- Sorbet: Is denser since the Ice and Flavoring are whipped together without air
- Italian Ice: Texture is smooth with the flavors blended uniformly into the ice.
Authentic Italian Gelato
All of Puopolo’s Gelato Ingredients are imported from Italy and made fresh daily on site. Puopolo’s uses a specific Gelato manufacturer in Italy who supplies approximately 70% to the Gelateria’s in Italy. That is why many of our customers who have traveled to Italy say our Gelato tastes exactly like what they experienced in Italy…because it is the same product and process as what they were served overseas! This is also why Puopolo’s is the best ice cream store in Tulsa, and also the best ice cream store in Oklahoma.
So, this begs the question, what is the difference between American Ice Cream and Gelato (Italian Ice Cream). Here are the 3 primary differences:
- Gelato typically contains half the fat verses American ice cream. Believe it or not, Italian Gelato is actually healthier than American Ice Cream because it has half the butterfat!
- Gelato has a much denser consistency than American ice cream.
- This is due to Gelato having less overrun. Overrun is actually ‘Air’ that is incorporated into the ice cream during the batch freezer process. Typically, Gelato has 30% overrun (air) whipped into it, whereas, American ice cream has 80-100% overrun (air). What this means is that Americans are paying more for ‘air’ in their product than in Gelato. This is also why Gelato is slightly more expensive per serving…its because you are getting more product in the same serving size.
- Lastly, Gelato is served at slightly warmer temperatures verses American Ice Cream, so it does not freeze the taste buds, but allows one to fully enjoy the flavors of the Gelato. This also creates a more intense flavor profile verses American Ice Cream.
Puopolo’s Unique Signature Strati’s
The Pièce de Ré·sis·tance of Puopolo’s offerings would have to be our Signature Strati’s! The term ‘Strati’ is Italian for layers. Therefore, Puopolo’s Strati is a layered masterpiece combining our Homemade Italian Ices, Premium Soft Serve Ice Cream, and a combination of Unique Toppings all combined into a customized creation not available elsewhere ~ Really!
Several of our Signature Strati’s are:
• The Uncle Dan – Sour Apple Italian Ice & Vanilla Soft Serve with Hot Caramel layered throughout
• The Freedom Strati – Vanilla Soft Serve layered between Blue Raspberry and Cherry Italian Ices topped with a Strawberry Sauce
• The Unicorn – Cotton Candy Italian and Bubble Gum Soft Serve topped with Cotton Candy sprinkles
• The Cherry Bomb – Cherry Italian Ice and Chocolate Soft Serve layered with Chocolate Fudge Sauce and Maraschino Cherries
Come to Puopolo’s and you will see why …the CRAVINGS are REAL!!!