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Serendipity Makes Kosher Ice Cream for Passover

Charoset, inspired by a traditional dish made of chopped apples, wine, walnuts, and cinnamon, tastes similar to apple pie.
Charoset, inspired by a traditional dish made of chopped apples, wine, walnuts, and cinnamon, tastes similar to apple pie.
Courtesy of Serendipity

Passover, one of Judaism's holiest holidays, kicked off on Monday night, marking a week-long fest in which Jews, despite cravings, abstain from chametz, which is any leavened food made from wheat, rye, spelt, barley, or oats. That means no ice cream unless you swing by Serendipity, a tiny artisanal ice cream shop with locations in Wynwood and Surfside.

"During the holiday, most of us are starving for anything that is decent tasting," founder/owner Jessica Levison says. "We're forced to eat food that doesn't always taste great, which is why we wanted to find a way to make ice cream that is acceptable for Passover."

Levison created two limited-edition flavors that will be available through the end of the holiday on Tuesday, April 18.

"Many ice creams are made with corn products that you're unable to eat during the holiday," she says. "Obviously that limits a lot, like cookie dough, cookies and cream, or anything with leavened products."

After experimentation in the kitchen, Levison created charoset, inspired by a traditional dish made of chopped apples, wine, walnuts, and cinnamon, which tastes similar to apple pie; and buttered cinnamon matzoh brittle, which blends sweet and savory with a salt and honey cream base.

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Before Levison whipped up both flavors, she sanitized her kitchen and recruited a rabbi to supervise production.

"Everything is cleaned out and any traces of bread are removed," she says. "We get every nook and cranny, and then we're very careful when we make our special flavors."

Once the holiday ends, Serendipity will bring back its recently launched ice cream sandwiches to the Wynwood location. Cookies are baked on-site, and any flavor of ice cream can be stuffed in-between, including rum raisin and dark chocolate whiskey.

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