We were driving blissfully through Estes Park, on our way to the cabin, deciding when we might make our obligatory trip or two to the Malt Shop, a must on any trip to Estes.
After we turned past the tacky Indian Village shop and our car waded through the waves of tourists in Colorado Rockies Tees, I turned my head over my shoulder, as I always do, to peek into the always open door of the Malt Shop.
It was gone. The old pastel sign was gone. The door was closed. And a familiar Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory sign was hanging in its place.
Now I'm fine with the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory. It's far less depressing than a Coldstone or a Krispy Kreme. But there is already a Chocolate Factory next to McD's. Why'd they have to take my Malt Shop?
The Malt Shop had old wire chairs with red plastic seats. It's walls were papered with vintage Coca Cola wallpaper. It had a soda bar, complete with a marble countertop, swively stools, and an old cash register. The ice cream was Blue Bunny, but you can't win 'em all.
They made apple pie shakes, something so beautiful I included the recipe in my book. They would blend a big piece of apple pie with vanilla ice cream. (That's me eating one blissfully below last summer.)
We visited the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory on Saturday. As a nod to their beloved predecessor, they left the Apple Pie Shake on the menu. But it's $6.25. I got a chocolate suicide malt. It was delicious. But gone were the barstools and Cola signs and old wire furniture, so we ate it outside by the river. I'll miss my Malt Shop.
Tonight we made fresh Cilantro Lime Pesto with more of our freshy fresh farm ingredients. It made a delicious chicken sandwich. I love summer. I love summer food. I'll try not to go on and on about food all summer.
I'm eating more rhubarb than I ever have: 3 days in a row. Tonight I made rhubarb lime ice cream. It was tasty and super tart. Here's what I did (I only had enough to make 1 serving, and please excuse the craptacular photography) :
2 stalks rhubarb, chopped
1/8 cup water
2 teaspoons lime juice
Simmer all these together until the rhubarb is falling apart. Then mash and cool. Then whip together:
1/8 cup cream
1/8 cup milk
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Then freeze all together, periodically stirring to make smooth.