Sunday dinner

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I really upset The Kid.

We were talking, and I revealed where Darbie and I had lunch on Friday.

It just happened to be two of my child’s favorite eateries — Chubby’s Tacos and Menchie’s frozen yogurt.

Well, sorta.

The original plan was to pick up a couple of tacos and go back to work to eat them. But the parking lot in front of Chubby’s was pretty full, and we had to park further up — right in front of Menchies.

Menchies is our very favorite frozen yogurt joint. They usually have eight or 10 different flavors, and somehow, without artificial flavors, they all manage to taste exactly what they’re supposed to taste like.

Cake batter? It tastes like you’re 6 and Mom is letting you lick the beaters.

Green apple? It’s tart and sweet and reminds you of Jolly Ranchers.

And the toasty marshmallow tastes like campfires and burnt little tongues and fingers. It’s my Waterloo.

I can eat it by the bucket (literally, those cups they use are big enough to bathe a baby). I dust the bottom with Graham cracker crumbs, pile on about four pounds of the delicious yogurt, and drench it with warm caramel sauce. It’s a s’more for a pre-diabetic. And I can eat my weight in it.

I said, half to myself, “I wonder if they have toasted marshmallow today…?”

And my friend, the temptress Darbie said, “I was here a few days ago, and they did.”

Well, my taco lunch suddenly turned into a dumpster full of my twisted s’more.

Darbie, who is much more mature, and has lots more sense than I, had a couple of tacos, and a reasonable amount of fro-yo for dessert.

I ate all of mine, and when my friend went to get her serving, I went in with her for a little more yogurt — but this time it was in the interest of science.

The very first treat that I ever had at Menchies, the one that made me lose my heart to this purveyor of frozen bacterially fermented milk, was their Dole whip.

The most basic description for Dole whip is pineapple sorbet.

But that description is like saying “Jaws” is a movie about a fish.

Dole whip is frozen, yellow happiness that tastes like sunshine and friendship. It’s one of those foods that is so good, it transcends its own category. It rises above sorbet and becomes a gift to your palate. The Kid and I would happily eat enough to replace all the blood in our body with Dole Whip.

So, anyway, when I fixed my first bucket o’ toasty marshmallow twisted s’more I noticed a new condiment among the fixin’s — Tajin.

Tajin is a Mexican seasoning blend made from chili powder, lime and salt. It’s great on savory foods, like plantain chips, yucca and pork. It’s also killer when used around the edge of a Margarita glass.

It’s also used on fruit sold by street vendors. Fruit like mango and pineapple. It’s a symphony of salty/sweet, mellow/spicy, with a citrus bite.

I bought a little bit of the Dole Whip and sprinkled on some Tajin.

It was really good.

But The Kid didn’t care about my culinary experimentation. The Kid just wanted tacos and yogurt. So, I invited my spawn and Darbie to dine at Chubby’s and finish up with dessert at Menchies.

My treat.

I thought my child would be ecstatic at the combo of Dole Whip with Tajin.

The Kid’s exact words?

“I’m not here for it.”

(That’s Kidspeak for, “Nope, no thank you.”)

Dole Whip is traditionally served in amusement parks and therefore is a treat only enjoyed infrequently. Years ago, we decided to recreate it at home so that we could enjoy it whenever we had a hankerin’.

We came up with a recipe that is easy if you have the right ingredients and equipment, with ingredients that are easy to procure, and so good it’ll make you swoon.

Thanks for your time.

Contact me at

Homemade Dole Whip

To make this, you will need a very strong blender — we use the Kid’s Vitamix.

4 1/2 cups frozen pineapple — kept frozen

1 8-ounce tub of fat-free Cool Whip

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 pinch of salt

Load everything into the blender and blend until it becomes a homogeneous mass the consistency of frozen yogurt. Either eat immediately or place in the freezer until it freezes more solidly. This will become more like scoopable ice cream.

Serves 4 (or me).


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