Schrafft's lunch counters started around 1900 in Boston and by the middle of the century had several locations in New York City. It attracted a large crowd of single ladies and between-job Broadway actors to its counters. Combine this with their sponsorship of the annual telecasts of The Wizard of Oz and their inspiration for some of the best lines in Auntie Mame ("Patrick and I just stuffed ourselves at Schrafft's. Do you know what your silly nephew did? He spoke French to the counterman. Imagine anyone speaking French. To a counterman. At Schrafft's!") and you'll agree that Schrafft's might have been the original Big Gay Ice Cream Shop.
Our hot fudge recipe is spun from the one served at Schrafft's. Cooked right, it has a deeply dark and rich taste that turns ice cream into something otherworldly. It's from a hot fudge waterfall in a land where unicorns nibble on rainbow-coloured cotton candy.
1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup sugar
¾ cup heavy cream
¼ cup light corn syrup
2 tbsp unsalted butter
60g unsweetened chocolate
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
pinch of coarse sea salt
a few drops of malt vinegar
1. Whisk the cocoa, sugar, anda quarter cup of the heavy cream in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat until smooth. Add the corn syrup, butter, chocolate, and the remaining half cup of cream and bring to a boil over medium heat, without stirring. Then cook for about three minutes longer, until a candy thermometer reaches 113C . Remove from the heat.
2. Stir in the vanilla, salt, and malt vinegar. The sauce will thicken upon cooling or when poured over ice cream. Store refrigerated in an airtight container for up to two weeks; reheat before serving.
Makes 1½ cups
Edited extract from Big Gay Ice Cream. Copyright © 2015 by Bryan Petroff and Douglas Quint. Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Penguin Random House, LLC.