The expansion-minded duo behind New York City's Big Gay Ice Cream shop are ready to release their debut cookbook, and they'll do so in their usual irreverent style. For Big Gay Ice Cream: Saucy Stories & Frozen Treats: Going All the Way with Ice Cream, co-founders Douglas Quint and Bryan Petroff depart from the usual cookbook narrative, instead offering a "yearbook" that compares the ice cream-making process to the high school experience. (BGIC's high school experience, for what it's worth, is probably way more colorful, confident, and gleefully outlandish than your own.)
Back in 2012, Quint told Eater that the yearbook format — complete with technical commentary from the "Science Club" and the duo's famous friends, who all get the superlative treatment — was borne out of necessity. "The most daunting thing for a lot of people is making custard," Quint said. "So we came up with a concept that turns it around into a four-'year' course on making ice cream. The first year out, you're really just making sundaes with store-bought stuff. The second year, you're making sauces. Third year, you're making ice cream not from custard. And then fourth year you're going full hog." The result is a 1980s-themed book featuring mix tape playlists, several illustrations of Golden Girl Bea Arthur, and appearances by the likes of "Class Stoners" Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo and "Homecoming Queen" Gail Simmons.
And of course, there are recipes for some of BGIC's most popular scoops, toppings, and sundaes: Quint and Petroff's "Awesomesauce," their Salty Pimp sundae, and ice cream flavors from Rocky Road House to Philly-style sweet-cream. The entire yearbook kicks off with a foreword from "Headmaster" Anthony Bourdain, who lists the myriad reasons why Quint and Petroff have been suspended from the student body. (Something about "the widespread abuse of sugary frozen treats with ironic names.")
Big Gay Ice Cream: Saucy Stories and Frozen Treats will be released by Clarkson Potter on April 28 (pre-order here). In the meantime, read on for Bourdain's complete foreword, plus a sneak peak at a couple spreads — note that the pages represent an incomplete transcript; don't try to cook from this yearbook just yet.