Kopps Frozen Custard

So I had many reasons for starting this blog. The first, was to use this as a virtual cookbook for all the recipes that Mr. Pea and I create and make. The second, was to use this as a way to build my food photography portfolio, as I am an aspiring food photographer. In this blog, I also want to talk about different restaurants that we have been to throughout Milwaukee as well as through our travels that are worth going to. Most of our friends ask us about different restaurants we have been to, and trust us foodies to give thoughtful reviews of places. Well this next place I am going to talk about, is probably a place that anyone that lives in Milwaukee has probably been to. This local Milwaukee landmark I am talking about is Kopp’s Frozen Custard.

This fabulous frozen custard restaurant has got to be my favorite guilty pleasure. It is one of the only fast food places that I will go to. Mr. Pea and I don’t visit many fast food places in general, our philosophy is that we can usually cook better food at home so why bother with the fast food crap. But Kopp’s frozen Custard is far from fast food crap, in fact, you will think you have dies and gone to fast food heaven!

Kopp’s makes the burgers that beat all burgers, period. Recently, there was a Man vs. Food episode that created a debate for which restaurant had the best burger. The only problem, Kopp’s wasn’t even a contender, probably because anybody would lose going up against this burger (or at least that is what I would like to think!). This burger is so freaking good, it is huge, buttery and made fresh to order just the way you like it. I like mine with just cheese and ketchup, but Mr.Pea likes his with raw onions and ketchup and mustard, but that is the beauty of it you can have it any way you would like.

If you are indulging with a burger you are already throwing your healthy diet out the window, so I say go all out. I like to have my burger with their tasty shoestring fries (that are light on the salt, which I like) and wash it down with a Sprecher Root Beer. Now try not to get too full, kind of impossible-but try! Why? because this is a frozen custard place of course, it wouldn’t be a trip to Kopp’s without the custard!

This custard is to die for, it is so delicious it just melts in your mouth. They make up many delicious flavors, two different kinds everyday. Don’t worry even if their flavor of the day isn’t your cup of tea, their chocolate and vanilla are so good all by themselves. My favorite flavor is their Pecan Praline, which is a Carmel flavored custard with candied pecans or pralines. Mr. Pea’s favorite is their butter pecan, which I like also like, but I am not very picky when it comes to Kopp’s frozen custard.So if you haven’t been to Kopp’s yet, I suggest you go now, you can thank me later!

Image

At this Glendale location, there are white and one black cow sculptures that are pretty cool 🙂

Image

Must get a Specher Root Beer to wash down this delicious burger (make it a float if you think you can’t save room for dessert!)

Image

Look at that burger, now doesn’t that make your tummy rumble.

Image

Today’s flavor was one of my favorites, Orange dream, it is like a creamcicle on crack!

Image

Mr. Pea had Chocolate Banana Walnut Chunk, which was pretty good and those are his favorite flavors so needless to say he enjoyed it!

I <3 Kopp’s Frozen Custard!

Matzo Ball Soup

Ever since I mentioned Ella’s Deli on a previous post, I have been craving matzo ball soup! It just so happens that Mr. Pea stumbled upon a fantastic recipe that perfected the recipe for matzo ball soup this past week. Perfect! We are two peas in a pod that’s for sure!

Well I couldn’t give you the recipe for matzo ball soup without talking about some of my favorite kosher style deli’s that I have been to that are not only great but are worth the trip! The first place I already talked about, and will talk about again because it is one of my favorite places, is Ella’s Deli. This kosher style deli is located in Madison, Wisconsin and is a stop we have to make every year on the drive out to Memorial Day camping. This place has been around since 1976, and there is a reason why it is still around today, it is SOO good! They have good matzo ball soup but they also have sweet and sour cabbage soup and chili that are pretty amazing as well. If there is one thing you go to a deli for it is corned beef, and I think you all know my feelings on corned beef, since I declared it my favorite meal on St. Patty’s Day. But this corned beef sandwich piled high on rye bread is one of my favorite things to eat hands down. If you leave room for dessert, which I never can do, they have a twelve page dessert menu to fulfill your sweet tooth! It is not just the food that makes Ella’s one of my favorite places, it is also the atmosphere of all the animated displays, nostalgic trinkets and toys from years past, and the tabletop games to keep you entertained while you wait for food. Also, if you go there during the spring, summer and fall months, no trip to Ella’s is complete without a ride on the 1927 Parker Carousel! So much fun!

The next place I want to talk about is one of our local favorites Benji’s Deli. Formerly, known as Benjamin’s (which is neat, because Mr. Pea’s name is Benjamin), this kosher style deli is a family favorite, and most of our family dinners take place here. I just have to say, I have NEVER had a bad meal at Benji’s and I have been going there for years! It has been around for 35 years or so, so they must be doing something right. Oh yeah everything! Best known for their corned beef served on Miler Rye, a local bakery that makes the best rye bread I have ever had. If in the corned beef mood, I usually steer towards their take on a Ruben sandwich, the Gonzo sandwich. What is a Gonzo? It is for those people who don’t favor sauerkraut. That’s right I am just going to say it, I HATE sauerkraut! Sorry for my bluntness, getting back the sandwich, the Gonzo is a corned beef sanwich, with Swiss cheese, lettuce, tomato, thousand island dressing and Cole slaw, served on Miller’s rye bread. It is the best, and it has all of the good stuff from a Reuben and none of that awful kraut!

I hate to even mention this next place, because I just found out (only a few minutes ago) that a few months ago when I last went to this deli, was the last time I will EVER get to go, because it is CLOSED! To add more sting to the open wound we were (ironically enough) there on their last day of service! My heart just dropped when I read this, we were even planning a trip to go back for Mother’s Day, it is a sad day when a good place like this becomes another victim of the recession. Well in effort to let this next place live on after it has closed, I must tell you all about it. It is called George’s What’s Cooking Family Restaurant and was located in Waukegan, Illinois. I loved this place for their bread baskets alone. No matter what time of the day you go, you get a fresh bread basket stocked full of all kinds of fresh bread, crackers and bread sticks. Also, if I haven’t mentioned it before, I am a huge pickle fan! But I don’t like just any pickle, they have to be whole kosher style dill pickles, other pickles simply just do not compare! This place had some good pickles. They also are known for their corned beef, soups (sweet and sour cabbage soup, matzo and borscht), and their American diner food was excellent as well. Anything I had there, had been well amazing! Well I will always remember George’s and it surely will be missed.We had some great memories there that I will look back on, including a brunch for Mother’s Day with Mr. Pea’s late grandmother, Grandma B.

So if that sad story didn’t didn’t make you hungry for some Matzo Ball soup, I don’t know what will.

Image

MATZO BALL SOUP
serves about 6 people (makes 14 balls)

Ingredients for the soup:
2 chicken thighs (skin on!)
8 cups chicken stock (low-sodium, organic if possible)
2 cups small diced carrots
1 cup small diced celery
1/4 cup finely chopped parsley stems

Ingredients for the balls:
4 egg yolks
1/2 cup chicken stock
3 tablespoons rendered chicken fat (melted and cooled slightly)
1/2 cup chopped parsley
1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 cup matzo meal
4 egg whites

Directions:

Place the chicken thighs in a cold pan, skin-side down, over medium heat. Allow to cook for about 15 minutes until the fat has rendered and browned. Remove from the pan, leaving the fat behind. Combine the stock and browned thighs in a soup pot over medium-high heat and bring to a simmer. Cook gently for 30 minutes. Remove the thighs. Add the carrots, celery and parsley stems. Cook for 5 minutes and turn off the heat.
Meanwhile, whisk together the egg yolks, chicken stock, chicken fat (from the pan with the thighs), parsley and salt. Stir in the matzo meal. In another bowl, whisk the whites until they form stiff peaks. Add half of the whites into the matzo mixture and stir (the mixture will be quite stiff). Then gently fold in the remaining egg whites. Cover and refrigerate for 15 minutes.

ImageBring a pot of water to a boil. Use a 1/4-cup scoop to form the balls and drop gently into the water

ImageAdjust the heat so the water is barely simmering and cook for 15 minutes, when they float to the top that is good it means they will be light and fluffy.

ImageRemove the balls with a slotted spoon and place into the soup.

ImageHeat gently for 15 minutes before serving.

Enjoy!