Ice cream, cones transformed into savory bites

America's latest coast-to-coast trend has ice cream lovers re-imagining the basic ice cream cone into a full meal with Milan's export of pizza cones and Las Vegas's RM Seafoods 16-scoop tasting menu.

On August 20, Cono Italiano, a food company that offers "a drip-free cone made from proprietary dough designed to be consumed while on the go," originating in Milan, Italy, announced, "We are anxious to introduce Pizza Cono to the North American Market and gain the company's market share of the $4.4 billion frozen pizza category. Frozen pizza is among the fastest growing categories in supermarkets and convenience stores."  

Cono Italiano is hoping to attract fans of Hot Pockets, hot pastry turnovers filled with meat, cheese and vegetables, and similar snacks, and expand their reach beyond their planned locations in Tennessee, South Carolina, Delaware, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York and New Jersey to "fast food markets, quick-service restaurants, takeaways, mobile and street vendors, small to mid-size businesses, ball parks/stadiums/theaters/fair grounds, malls, event planning, small and large supermarkets, and airline carriers."

The "spill-free par baked cone" is made to hold a variety of "on the go" foods for breakfast and snacks including salads and bacon and eggs. 

When it comes to savory bites, the versatility of the ice cream cone - its shape and consistency - extends to ice cream flavors on the west coast and throughout molecular gastronomy kitchens worldwide. 

Celebrity chef Rick Moonen's restaurant RM Seafood at the Mandalay Bay resort in Las Vegas is keeping diners cool this August with "29 obscure ice cream flavors like foie gras, basil, black truffle and lobster roe," according to lifestyle ezine Urban Daddy on August 23.

If you find yourself in Vegas you might want to try to win "Rick's tasting game," by correctly naming 16 scoops of the "obscure" flavors randomly served up. It costs $18/€14 to play but if you get them all right the experience is free. http://www.mandalaybay.com/dining/restaurantrm.aspx

Savory ice creams should only up the American love affair with the frosty tasty dessert. IceCream.com claims "every year Americans devour an average of 48 pints (22.7 liters) of ice cream per person.

According to the American Farm Bureau, National Geographic estimates that "Americans spend close to $20 billion dollars on ice cream per year" and somewhere between $20-30 billion on pizza.

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