4th of July in my new neighborhood was a real slice of Americana. Mike, my neighbor across the street led the parade with his bagpipes! I have to confess I was a bit worried when he said he only plays them once a year. I was expecting the worst but I was surprised and impressed! Come to find out, Mike competed in Scotland. This is no amateur piping! He played a repertoire of patriotic songs as the kids on decorated bikes and scooters paraded down the street.
This kicked off an assortment of activities from a dunk tank, to jump house, cotton candy machine, mojito bar (adults only!), banana split bar and a 18 foot buffet table of sides and dessert! There were three dueling fireworks displays along Castro Way and from my front porch I could see them all.
Earlier in the day, Mario taught me how to make chocolate bowls using water balloons (sans water of course) and we filled them with a very patriotic sundae: Vanilla Bean Ice Cream, Raspberry/Blueberry Sauce and a shot of Redi-whip! The chocolate bowl softened in the Sacramento heat just enough. After all, July is National Ice Cream Month as designated by Ronald Reagan in 1984. He proclaimed it a fun and nutritious food enjoyed by all Americans. The nutritious part is questionable but he was the same guy that designated Ketchup as a vegetable. July is ALSO National Blueberry Month and we all know how nutritious they are! It’s all about balance so I say as long as you eat blueberries WITH your ice cream you are good to go!
1)Get a cooking sheet ready covered with wax paper.
2)Blow up the balloons to about the size of a large grapefruit. Spray with cooking spray.
3)Melt some chocolate in a double boiler or microwave. We used chocolate chips but Mario had previously done it with melting chocolate like you find at craft stores like Michael’s or Joanne’s.
4)Let the melted chocolate cool to room temperature
5) Roll the balloon around in the chocolate to coat about half way up the ballon about 1/8 inch thick.
6) Use a spoon to drizzle some chocolate all around to create a cool design.
7) Set down on the wax paper covered cookie sheet on the round bottom to create a flat bottom.
Refrigerate for about 10-15 minutes
9) Pop the balloon and remove.
10) Drain one can of Oregon Fruit Blueberries and one can of Oregon Fruit Raspberries and reserve syrup
11) Whisk together in a medium saucepan the syrup from both cans and 3 Tbs cornstarch. Heat over medium heat until the syrup becomes thickened and clear.
12) Remove from heat and gently fold in the drained berries.
13) Put a couple of big scoops of ice cream into the chocolate bowls. Top with a generous helping of berry sauce and top with a dollop of whipped cream.
14) Insert sparklers and light (OPT) Try this out if you have any sparklers left!Tags: Blueberries, chocolate bowls, ice cream, national blueberry month, national ice cream month