National Spumoni Day is a holiday that celebrates the popular ice cream dessert that is made with layers of different flavors. Traditional spumoni has three layers, and the name of the ice cream comes from the Italian word for “foam” – spuma.
According to culinary historians, spumoni was invented by the people of Naples in the 19th century. An article in the Chicago Tribune from 1979 claimed that the “authentic” recipe was brought to America from Nola, Italy, where it was called “Neapolitan”. In 1905, Italian immigrant Salvatore Lezza and his wife Lucia opened a candy store in Chicago that served a cold, three-layer dessert made with almond ice cream, semi-sweet chocolate, and stracciatella (ice cream with irregularly shaped chocolate pieces).
In 1939, spumoni became popular in Brooklyn thanks to Ludovico Barbati, an Italian who opened L&B Spumoni Gardens. Before opening his own establishment, Barbati sold spumoni from a horse-drawn wagon. L&B’s spumoni is served in glasses filled with ice, rather than the traditional method of slicing it.
- On National Spumoni Day, consider learning some interesting facts about this ice cream:
- Spumoni is typically cut into slices, rather than eaten with a spoon, to show off its multi-colored layers.
- Spumoni can be made in the form of a roll or a cake.
- The most popular type of spumoni is colored in the colors of the Italian flag (green, white, red).
- Spumoni is popular in countries with large immigrant communities from Italy.
- In the United States, spumoni is often eaten as a Christmas dessert with a variety of cookies.
How to take part
- Go to an ice cream parlor with your family or friends to enjoy spumoni.
- Make your own spumoni by layering three different flavors of ice cream, whipped cream, cherries, and almonds. You can come up with your own original recipe.
- Share photos and exclusive spumoni recipes on social media using the hashtag #NationalSpumoniDay.
When is National Spumoni Day celebrated in 2024?
National Spumoni Day is observed on August 21 each year.