When the lovely Ms. Jennifer Still asked me to write the TGIF Treats column for the week, I was completely amped. TGIF Treats are a special category – they symbolize the perfect thing to celebrate the completion of a typically tough week. Since they yanked the TGIF lineup off the air years ago, we need these treats to remind ourselves that it’s time to relax – moreso now than ever.
One of my close friends moved this past weekend and she excitedly told me when she heard her first familiar Ice Cream Truck jingle in the new neighborhood. In all capital letters (this was over GTalk, of course) I announced that she needed to “GET THAT THING WITH THE GUMBALLS ON THE BOTTOM!” That “thing” is better known as a Screwball. And since the weather has been obnoxiously hot on the East Coast, I claim the cold, delicious Screwball to be our treat of the week!
The one negative about the Screwball is that it’s commonly found… on ice cream trucks only. While the rare store might carry them (Popsicle and Blue Bunny have their own versions), the only definite is flagging down the guy who’s wearing white and blasting ‘The Entertainer’ from his vehicle. Is it worth it to chance standing in line with a bunch of elementary school children? In short, yes.
The Screwball is the top of the line, as far as desserts go. When you’ve finished the ice cream portion, there’s still a treat – or in some cases, two treats (The “Two-ball Screwball” exists – I know, the name is unfortunate) – waiting for you at the bottom of the plastic cone. The inventor of the Screwball obviously knew that the worst part of dessert is knowing when it’s over and made a fantastic effort in prolonging the experience for as long as possible. It’s like a double-dessert!
Here is some history on the Screwball: They originated in the 1970’s, and became such a hit that the commercial name eventually became the universal name (kind of like the “Kleenex” or “Q-Tip” of ice cream products.) While many-a Screwball includes a raspberry or cherry flavoring, a company called Rich Ice Cream Company, located in Florida, also makes them in Blue Raspberry and Sour Watermelon.
In the slim chance my TGIF Treat leaves you ice cream-less (if you’re in a neighborhood where ice cream trucks fail to travel), some winning alternatives are the products by Skinny Cow. Delicious, not terrible for you, and available at most major grocery stores. I personally recommend the Mint with Fudge Cone, and the Caramel Truffle.
And if you just so happen to chew some gum afterward to try and relive the Screwball, I recommend Bazooka Joe, solely because I think the comics are a nice bonus.
Photo Credit: lifeandloveinthesouth.blogspot.com