By Bea and Ken
Pedro’s claim to fame is his homemade ice-cream.
This is his story: At age eleven, he worked with his godfather at this same location. His godfather has been making ice-cream for over forty years, and presently continues to make ice-cream in Guayabitos.
When Pedro was eighteen, he went to California where he worked in construction. In 2007, he returned to La Peñita to operate Helados “Elim”.
Located at the corner of the Avenida and Bahai de Acapulco across from El Korita Abarrotes.
We asked him about the name of his establishment and he said he called it “Elim” after the church he attended in California. Elim in the Bible is an oasis or a fertile green spot in a desert. How appropriate! Ice-cream is a cool experience.
At any time of the day when we passed Helados “Elim”, we would purchase a waffle type “cono” — 12 pesos, but didn’t have the slightest idea that his ice-cream was made on the premises. A few days ago, Pedro invited us to come and watch the process of making ice-cream. So today, just before the real rush of Semana Santa, we observed as he made a batch of raspberry ice-cream.
The base is purchased in five gallon pails from Monterrey—it looks like a thick pudding. To this he added more milk and artificial mantequilla flavouring. Then he used a Makita angle grinder to which paddles are attached to make a gigantic mixer. He poured the mixture into a stainless steel ice-cream freezer which is placed in a bath of ice water and salt.
A motor turned the paddles inside, allowing it to mix and freeze for a period of thirty minutes. He then prepared the raspberry and strawberry preserves to add later. He told us that he likes to use as much fresh fruit as possible in season.
At this point, Pedro presented us with a dish of coffee ice-cream, and went to his house for a break.
Meanwhile, there was a steady stream of customers lined up at the counter — decision time! Which of the many flavours do we choose?
Venus Denisse, Pedro’s sister, his brother and cousin scooped ice-cream. It’s a family affair! Pedro’s wife also helps out when she is not busy with their one-year-old daughter. Pedro’s parents live upstairs and Pedro and his family live next door to the store.
Ice-cream bars are also made on the premises.
Pedro said that on a normal busy weekend day he would sell about 50 ice-cream cones while on the very busy Semana Santa days he will probably sell about 300.
The finished product—Raspberry Ripple Ice-cream.
When I asked if he gets tired of eating ice-cream, he smiled and said, “Sometimes”.
My favourite flavours: Coconut, Raspberry and Coffee
Ken’s favourite flavours: Chocolate Chip and Coffee
For the best ice-cream in La Peñita and the friendliest family service, cool off with a mouth-watering flavour of your choice — it will be hard to decide which one.
helado (a) – ice cream as a noun but as an adjective also frozen
heladera – ice cream maker or ice cream vendor
heladeria – ice cream store
hielo – ice
The verb is
helar – to freeze or
congelar – to freeze – easier to remember if you associate it with congeal
If you want to order in Spanish here is a bit of help.
cono – cone
vaso – glass or paper cup
paleta – from the dictionary it is many things including a lollipop or a Popsicle but in La Peñita it is also an ice cream bar or frozen fruit bar on a stick. It comes from the root
palo – stick, pole, handle