What to Look For
If you spend much time in India — or Jackson Heights — you may have enjoyed a refreshing kulfi pop on a hot day. This condensed, ultradairy, eggless treat is marvelously chewy-creamy. Kool Freeze Kulfi pops are not only made with natural, primarily pronounceable ingredients like milk and organic evaporated cane juice, they also feature fresh-fruit purées; exotic flavors like saffron, rose-water-imbued falooda, and chikoo (a.k.a. sapote, a tropical fruit that resembles sweet-potato pie); and more mainstream flavors like pistachio, coconut, and strawberry ($5.99 per four-pop box at Whole Foods).
Related: Exotic Dessert (Supposedly) Enrapturing New Yorkers
Fruit shrubs are not short trees but rather fermented fruit syrups meant to be mixed with water or sparkling wine. Tait Farm consulted eighteenth-century cookbooks like The Frugal Housewife and The Accomplish’d Gentlewoman’s Companion to arrive at tart, fruity, colorful recipes for cherry, ginger, raspberry, cranberry, and strawberry shrub ($7.99 per 12.7-ounce bottle at Murray’s Cheese).
First we loved fresh mozzarella; then we discovered even richer, more flavorful buffalo-milk mozzarella. Now those brilliant Campanian cheese makers have gone and truffled it. Fresh buffalo-milk mozzarella studded with black-truffle bits can be melted over asparagus, pasta, or pizza, or served with heirloom tomatoes for an extreme umami experience ($6.95 per 200-gram cup at D. Coluccio & Sons — call ahead to be sure it’s in stock).
Raw organic dairy-free agave gelato? Yes, indeed, and it really tastes good! Primarily made from organic, enzymatically active cashews, this remarkably creamy substance from Organic Nectars comes in delectable flavors like maple-walnut, goji-strawberry, and vanillagave ($7.19 per half-pint at Westerly Natural Market, $7.99 per half-pint at Integral Yoga).
Fair-trade, organic chocolate keeps getting better as more products enter this niche. One of the latest is also one of the tastiest: Seattle-based Theo Chocolate creates wonderfully snappy, smooth-textured, deep-flavored bars that showcase single-origin cacao beans at varying percentages. Theo also makes a sweet, super-crunchy brittle studded with cacao nibs ($6.98 per three-ounce bar at Amish Market.)
— Zoe Singer