Ice Cream Clown Sundaes from The Golden Girls

April 21st, 2009  | Category: Ice Cream & Sorbet

Ice Cream Clown Sundaes

OK. The secret is out. I’m adapting the script for the official Turkish adaptation of THE GOLDEN GIRLS. There. I’ve said it. And somehow, it still doesn’t sound real. If you had a chance to read about my first day in San Francisco, I’m sure you’d understand.

If you haven’t, here’s the jist of it: 1998. I landed at The San Francisco International Airport on a foggy Fall morning  and spent my whole day getting lost and eating greasy food, all the while carrying a forty-pound backpack. On the verge of collapse, I saw the neon lights of my motel, hugged the homeless guy who passed out on the street and ran to my room. Ten minutes later, I was lying in bed… almost paralyzed. Then I turned the TV on… and there they were… Four familiar faces gathered around a kitchen table, listening to the story the eldest was telling. I knew these women.  Thousands of miles away from friends and family, watching these women comforted me. I forgot about my aching feet & hurting back and slowly fell into sleep.

From that day on, I started watching the show religiously. The Golden Girls became an obsession for me. I’ve even named my blog after the show  (Fernando is Rose’s one-eyed teddy bear).

I’m not gonna bore you with the calculations, but between then and now, I must have watched each episode nearly 100 times. So you should imagine my face when I got the call from a friend asking me to adapt the scripts.

And the best part? Since sitcoms are 80 minutes in Turkey (I know.. don’t ask), I will be writing extra scenes, too!

Remember the pilot where Blanche was stood up at the altar by a bigamist? I’ve always thought that the episode needed some kind of a bachelorette party. And a chocolate cake with ganache frosting, cupcakes and Nutella fountains won’t hurt either, right?

And that’s just the half of it. The other half is… four of Turkey’s most famous and iconic actresses accepted to play the girls! Of course, I’m not alone in this. I am adapting the show together with an amazing Turkish screenwriter. Most of you probably won’t know her, so let me put this into context: Imagine writing a cookbook together with Dorie Greenspan.

Here they are (from left to right): Ismet (Dorothy), Gonul (Blanche), Inci (Rose) and Safiye (Sophia).

Golden Girls Turkish cast

And here’s the living room:

Golden Girls Living Room

This sure calls for a celebration. So here they are: Rose Nylund‘s World Famous Ice Cream Clown Sundaes.

Ice Cream Clown Sundaes

In Season 2, Rose prepared these sundaes to welcome Dorothy’s friend Jean, who later fell in love with her. Since this is Cafe Fernando, the vanilla ice cream as well as the chocolate sauce are homemade. Recipes courtesy of David Lebovitz and Dorie Greenspan respectively.


Serves 4


  • A quart of homemade vanilla ice cream (recipe here)
  • 3/4 cup chocolate sauce (recipe below)
  • 4 ice cream cones
  • Red candy pieces for the nose, chocolate eyes and mouth (recipe below)


  1. Using a tulip shaped glass, pour a small amount of the chocolate sauce to the bottom. Place a scoop of ice cream in the glass. Pour some more chocolate sauce. Top with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and place an ice cream cone upside down on top of the scoop.
  2. Cut a round shape from a red-colored soft candy and place it on the scoop as the nose.
  3. Using melted ice cream as glue, stick the chocolate eyes and mouth onto the scoop.
  4. Serve immediately.


Recipe adapted from Dorie Greenspan‘s “Chocolate Desserts by Pierre Herme”.

Yields approximately 3/4 cup


  • 3+1/2 ounces bittersweet chocolate
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp light corn syrup


  1. Place all ingredients in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly.
  2. Reduce heat and simmer until the sauce thickens slightly and coats the back of a wooden spoon (approximately 10-15 minutes).
  3. Use immediately or allow it to cool, then chill until needed.



  • 1+1/2 ounces bittersweet chocolate


  1. Melt the chocolate over a bain-marie.
  2. Draw 8 eyes and 4 mouths on a parchment paper with a thin paint brush and place in the refrigerator to harden.
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  1. 1 - EGT on April 21st, 2009

    Tebrikler Cenk! Congratulations! I’ve been reading your blog for over a year now and I am an addict! Being bilingual I love to read both the Turkish and English versions. I can’t wait to go back to Istanbul to watch Altin Kizlar! I used to love the original and I bet your version will be amazing too. Good luck! Just don’t make us wait too long between Cafe Fernando posts ;)) Harika fotograflarin ve yazilarin icin cok tesekkurler!

  2. 2 - Manggy on April 21st, 2009

    How cute! Was too young to remember this particular scene (or any scene, for that matter… hmm). Congratulations on the gig! It seems that I would have cast the Rose’s actress for Blanche and vice versa, but hey, I haven’t seen them act 🙂

  3. 3 - helen on April 21st, 2009

    I must say, the new golden girls are much more attractive and stylish…

    This is incredibly awesome! Way to go, Cenk!

  4. 4 - Joumana on April 21st, 2009

    Heartfelt congratulations! Since I watch Turkish soaps religiously on MBC and Dubai TV stations, I hope we will get the soap retransmitted and dubbed in Arabic soon, since I never watched the Golden Girls in the U.S. I loved Noor (the actress was so beautiful) and her co-star, Muhannad, WOW!
    Thanks for the most entertaining blog!

  5. 5 - MsGourmet on April 21st, 2009

    A Turkish version of ‘The Golden Girls’?

    Life just got a whole lot better!

  6. 6 - joey on April 21st, 2009

    Oh wow!!! I jumped out of my chair with the news! A huge gigantic congratulations to you!!! This is amazing and I can feel the excitement all the way here 🙂 Bravo!

    (now let’s have a scoop of that sundae…)

  7. 7 - SarahJ on April 21st, 2009

    Well, how lucky can you get? I’m so happy you have your most perfect treat. You bet! SJ

  8. 8 - melrose on April 21st, 2009

    Congratulations!!! But I have to say I do not like remakes…somehow it is allways bad copy of an original:(
    Here (in Germany where I live at the moment) is something like that very popular (films)…and I found it “grausam”, specially that my favorit characters are speaking german instead of english, and look somehow “strange”.
    Otherwise I envy you :))) on your great job with the The Golden Girls!!!

  9. 9 - HappyTummy on April 21st, 2009

    That is AWESOME!!

    (love the ice cream clown sundaes too!)

  10. 10 - Alison on April 21st, 2009

    Ohhhhh…that is AWESOME. 🙂 I am so happy for you. What a great opportunity. 🙂 I can just imagine how you must have felt…a dream come true! 🙂 I just watched them the other day for the first time in a LONG time (the first was when Merrill got out of jail and came to see Blanche and the second was when the couple came from Italy to take “their daughter” Dorothy back because she was getting married) and I realized how much I missed them.

    That episode with the ice cream clown sundaes is one of my absolute favorites (and the first season I bought on DVD). I can still hear Blanche ask…”Isn’t Danny Thomas one?” ROFLMAO

    Congratulations…I am sure it will be a hit. 🙂

  11. 11 - ibmnysf on April 21st, 2009

    how great for you! a melding of you love of the Golden Girls and your obvious writing talent.

  12. 12 - Fahad Saeed on April 21st, 2009

    Hi Cenk

    That sounds unreal and absolutelu amazing! I don’t usually like remakes either, as they somehow don’t do the original much justice (countless bollywood remakes of hollywood blockbuster’s haunt my childhood memories!). But Golden Girls in Tyrkish? Hell Yeah! I’d totally watch that!

    Congratulations and I can’t wait to hear more!

  13. 13 - Jill on April 21st, 2009

    I’m new to your blog…Congratulations!! I remember watching the Golden Girls…it was a break through show. Women still vibrant in their later years. I’m very excited for you.

  14. 14 - Allen of EOL on April 21st, 2009

    *finally* – we can talk about it!!! 🙂

    I’m so happy for you and hope it turns out to be a great success. I love watching GG reruns and agree there’s something comforting about it.

    The sundaes look perfect — Rose would be proud!

  15. 15 - HappyTummy on April 21st, 2009

    that is AWESOME! 🙂

    (love the ice cream clown sundaes too!!)

  16. 16 - naz on April 21st, 2009

    OH MY GOD! Congratulations:))) Tebrikler ve iyi sanslar!! I live abroad so I’ll try to find it in the internet…Wow, you must be sooo excited!!! Please do continue your posts and the recipes. I can’t bake without your recipes:(

  17. 17 - Gizem on April 21st, 2009

    Woooowww, Congratulations! Super und wundeba ve de muhtesem!!! How could’t I realize that you are not only good in cooking but also in other areas.
    It should be a good feeling to actualize your dream..
    Although I have just read your blog, I watched Turkish version by chance. It is pretty good compared to the original one…

  18. 18 - tokyoastrogirl on April 21st, 2009

    Wow- congratulations! It’s funny, I was just reading about this last week. I work in entertainment television in Los Angeles (TV Guide Network) and had mentioned this story to my producers. What a fantastic opportunity and yes- a celebration is in order!! I wish you could meet my co-worker who is as big (if not bigger) a Golden Girls fanatic as you are- he has a picture of Dorothy in his cubicle, haha!

    Congratulations again and good luck! Have fun!

  19. 19 - Micas on April 22nd, 2009

    Congratulations. It really was an amazing tv show… we need more of those nowadays!

  20. 20 - zestycook on April 22nd, 2009

    Congratulations!!! The Sundae looks great too!

  21. 21 - Ghille on April 22nd, 2009

    Mmmmmmmm….Thanks for the sweet treat and the sweet memories!

    My mother and I used to watch this show every night before I left for work and she went to bed.

    Mom died in 1997…and now I am retired, but I think I’ll go get some frozen custard and snuggle on the couch with old friends!

  22. 22 - Cynthia on April 23rd, 2009

    I am thrilled for you and this was news totally worth the suspense. I wish there was a way we would be able to see it around the world

  23. 23 - Around the Internet Kitchen: Schedule Change! | Macheesmo on April 23rd, 2009

    […] Ice Cream Clowns and Golden Girls – Hilarious, but apparently Cafe Fernando has been chosen to adapt the Golden Girls series in Turkish.  To celebrate he made these ridiculous ice cream clown sundaes which sort of scared me because I think clowns are creepy. (@ Cafe Fernando) […]

  24. 24 - Tony on April 24th, 2009

    congrats, Cenk! that sounds like such an awesome project – I hope you’ll blog more about it! I have a friend who’s almost as obsessed with the Golden Girls. I say almost because he’s probably watched each episode 70 times as opposed to 100 😀

  25. 25 - thepinkpeppercorn on April 24th, 2009

    Wowee, zowee!!! And here you had me at sundaes…. 🙂 Congratulations! Have fun!

  26. 26 - italian cooking recipes on April 25th, 2009

    Hi Cenk,

    Congratulations! That sounds amazing!


  27. 27 - Isabel James on April 26th, 2009

    Oh, what timing. I don’t intend to break the elation surrounding your exciting project, but breaking news from NYTimes just in tonight:


    I immediately came here to see if you’d heard the news. What is wonderful, though, is in fact the timing. You can take extra pride in carrying on her legacy.

    Here, I will unabashedly cite the metaphor: “like a Phoenix rising from the ashes.”

    Sorry about the news, but you’ll do her proud. Congratulations and good luck 🙂

  28. 28 - Miriam on April 26th, 2009

    Indeed it does call for a celebration! One of my favourite series too, good luck!

  29. 29 - Sean on April 26th, 2009

    How eerie your timing, and how sad. We will all miss Bea Arthur.

  30. 30 - Jen on April 26th, 2009

    Congratulations! The ice cream clown sundaes look cute and enticing too! =)

  31. 31 - Dragon on April 27th, 2009

    Congratulations! What a coincidence on the timing of this with Bea Arthurs death (may she rest in peace).

    Lovely sundaes! Yum!

  32. 32 - Susan from Food Blogga on April 27th, 2009

    These are darling! Just looking at them brings a smile to my face.

  33. 33 - Hande on April 28th, 2009

    Dorothy is dead!

  34. 34 - Hande on April 28th, 2009

    you have to make her leg of lamb, wouldn’t that be a good idea?

  35. 35 - Hillary on April 28th, 2009

    How adorable! This is a great dessert for a kid’s birthday party!

  36. 36 - My Taste Heaven on April 28th, 2009

    The ice-cream clown sundae is so lovely and creative!!!

  37. 37 - Michelle on April 30th, 2009

    I recently found your blog and just love it!
    We are traveling to Istanbul in June for a week then on for 2 more weeks down the coast.
    Would love to hear any suggestions for a “home” dinner party. We went to one last year in Buenos Aires and really enjoyed it.
    Tesekker Ederim

  38. 38 - Mrs Ergül on May 2nd, 2009

    Wow! What an accomplishment! Those four legendary faces are familiar for my Turk husband. Has it already started showing?

  39. 39 - Ari (Baking and Books) on May 5th, 2009

    Oh my god these sundaes are adorable! I want one.

  40. 40 - Su-Lin on May 6th, 2009

    Is this for real? If so, this is just too cool! Though I’m not familiar with the Turkish actresses, they look so right for the parts! Congrats!

  41. 41 - Berit on May 7th, 2009


    What incredible timing to read this… congrats on the link from Frugal Traveler, btw. It was you I thought of immediately when I heard Bea Arthur died.

    As always, so excited to read your gorgeous posts and find out about all the wonderful things you are doing!! Much love!

  42. 42 - Michelle on May 7th, 2009

    Best wishes on your new gig and you did Rose proud with the smiling sundaes.

  43. 43 - siri on May 7th, 2009


    This is just the most fascinating story I’ve heard in a long time. I can’t even imagine a Turkish version of The Girls. They are near and dear to my heart- particularly Rose (since I’m a Minnesota raised girl too).

    Just curious- are you planning to write the new version with a more racy, sexy, scandalous Blanche? Sounds like the old Turkish version took a lot of her personality out.

    Congrats on the job- sounds like a fantastic one for you.

    -Siri in Norway

  44. 44 - Kate - Aapplemint on May 8th, 2009

    Hey Cenk, thats great news ! Congratulations. I must admit i’ve never seen Golden Girls before, but now i’m gonna try n get them in DVD. The cones look way too adorable !

  45. 45 - Diana on May 12th, 2009

    Oh wow! Golden Girls is such a classic, in fact we had to watch it college (TV and Film production) for an example of the best television lighting. Congrats on such a great assignment and I love the ice cream!

  46. 46 - Jutta on May 13th, 2009

    A-MA-ZING!!! Congratulations!!!

  47. 47 - eni on May 20th, 2009


  48. 48 - Tartelette on May 28th, 2009

    Can’t believe I missed this! I LOVE the GG! Love watching the re-runs!

  49. 49 - Leesa on May 31st, 2009

    OMG! Hi Cenk.. I wish I lived in Turkey to catch this version… Do let us know when it airs and maybe someone will put it on Youtube!! I LOVEEEEEEE the Golden Girls… I could sit for hours and hours watching the episodes again and again… Congrats to you and keep us posted..

  50. 50 - mindy on June 1st, 2009

    So great! I love your blog posts wehn they appear, and congrats on your news! =)

  51. 51 - Rachel on July 17th, 2009

    Wow, Congratulations, Cenk!! I am a food blogger/ baker from SF (Berkeley actually). Ever since you were featured in the SF Chronicle I have been following you (still have the clipping with the recipes!) because a few years ago in my senior year of college I went to Turkey and fell in the love with the food & the country. In fact, I hope to come to Turkey and learn real Turkish cooking!
    Anyway, how cute that your first introduction to American TV was the golden girls, and you were so smitten. I love Gonul/Blanche’s hairdo and animal print jacket – they look perfectly cast! I am sure there will be some food moments written into this script.
    congrats again!

  52. 52 - Cenk on July 17th, 2009

    Rachel – Thanks for your lovely comment. I am also glad to have discovered your wonderful blog. I’m sure I’ll go through all your posts by the end of next week 🙂 Actually my first introduction to American TV was Dynasty! I was so excited to find out that it was also released on DVD a year ago. But nothing can beat The Golden Girls. Anyways, the Turkish version has ended for this season and I don’t think it will continue next year. The amount of sex talk and Blanche’s sexual escapades didn’t resonate with the Turkish public so well.

  53. 53 - Joanne on May 13th, 2010

    Now that truly sounds like a dream job! Well done, Cenk!

  54. 54 - Lucy on May 20th, 2010

    I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I dont know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


  55. 55 - Anna on November 3rd, 2010

    Just stumbled across your site and have really enjoyed reading it! I can’t wait to try some of your recipes. I had to comment because I too am IN LOVE with the Golden Girls. My friends and I joke that we’ll have a house with a lanai one day and be our own little group of Golden Girls! I’m looking forward to exploring your site more in the future- and good luck with the show 🙂

  56. 56 - Katie @ Shared Bites on November 30th, 2010

    Aye yai yai! This blog is so delightful! Quite the fun story hid behind the title of “Ice Cream Clown Sundaes” (and I thought I was just getting a Friendly’s throwback). Hope the adaptation is going well, and keep up the very endearing blogging.

  57. 57 - Melissa on March 29th, 2011

    Hey Cenk! I’ve come upon your site a number of times but…my god…someone in my generation who also loves Golden Girls AND teaches me how to measure flour? Growing up, my mom and I lived on chocolate raspberry ganache cake and Golden Girl re-runs. All the best of luck.

  58. 58 - Arthur in the Garden! on March 13th, 2012

    Everyone loves the Golden Girls!

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