Sweet Summer: New Orleans Sno Balls

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It's too hot to cook, so just skip to dessert. That's our philosophy, anyway. Besides, most summertime desserts have the added benefit of being cold, and anything that helps beat the heat is a winner.

This week we offer you a daily guide to the sweet treats of summer, from lo-cal to oh wow, and best of all, these sweet mood elevators are pleasingly priced with nothing over $6.

Day One - New Orleans Sno Ball

New Orleans Sno Ball
808 E Indian School Road
Phoenix, AZ 85015

Could there be any summer treat more American than the snow-cone? Not for me, anyway. There are 2 problems with the snow-cones of my youth: the ice chunks are too big and end up forming a solid mass before you finish, and the papery-cup they're served in will freeze your hand. Gratefully, the fun lovin' folks in Naw'lins figured out a way to deal with that when they one-upped the snow-cone with the sno bell (a grown up snow-cone for the kid in all of us).

First, shave the ice into soft, pillowy flakes. Second, ditch the kiddie cone cup and get a real one. Owner Abron Morgan, a transplant from the Big Easy, is a self-described flavorist. With over 50 in-house flavors, mostly hand mixed, it's easy to taste why. Morgan's a pro, and he's not skimpy with the sauce. Like any 10 year old will tell you, the flavoring can't just be added to cover the top. By the time you reach the end, its all ice and no flavor. Morgan's deft hand drenches the sno bell in stages, so your sno bell is sweet to the last drop. And, thankfully, it's not a solid mass by the time you've reached the bottom of the cup, so you can actually use the straw, and not a chisel, to finish your sno-bell.

Yes, I might skip dinner to head straight to a summery dessert, but here that is not required. The posted nutritional information put the calorie count for 2 pours of topping at 60. 60? Not a misprint, it's 60 calories, and even better, a large is around $4. I knew there was a reason I loved you, black cherry sno bell.

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