Wednesday, August 1, 2012

... we all scream for ICE CREAM

A couple of years ago, we used the ol' ice cream maker several times during the summer. Enough, that I actually invested in a secondary, smaller one (that didn't use ice and salt). Alas, it sat in its box, unused, for that summer and the next. This summer I pulled it out and gave it a try ... and it's been in almost constant use ever since!  Seriously... almost EVERY day!

Of course we've still been using our regular ice cream maker as well ... a couple of times anyway. Once we've gotten used to the convenience of the small ice cream maker, it's a little hard to go back to needing ice and rock salt, of having to soak the bucket, etc. We've used it when we wanted a larger batch (it makes about four times what the little one does) ... and the kids "enjoy" the little challenge of seeing who can keep their foot in the frigid ice water once the bucket has been removed (that's what they are doing in the picture above).  Silly kids!

Another reason I've been willing to make homemade ice cream SO often, is that I've found a couple SUPER yummy, super easy recipes. We're a pretty basic bunch, so it's the basics for the Blackhams ... vanilla and chocolate!

For the vanilla, I tried a custard type (with eggs, cooking the milk), and another (cooking the milk but no eggs) ... they were a bit of a pain to make, and had to be done hours, if not an entire day in advance.  Then I tried the "simple vanilla ice cream" recipe that came in the instruction book of the small mixer ... and that has been our favorite! Just mix and go!

Super Simple Vanilla Ice Cream
2 cups Half and Half (or we've tried whole milk instead)
1 cup Heavy Cream
1/2 cup Sugar
1 tsp Vanilla (we've used Vanilla Bean here too! Yum!)

Simply mix together and pour into the ice cream maker ... 20-30 minutes later, fresh, homemade ice cream!

I thank Pinterest for the recipe for chocolate ...  it tastes almost exactly like a Frosty from Wendys!  Again, it's super yummy and super easy ...

Chocolate Frosty Ice Cream
1 8oz tub Cool Whip (we have tried substituting regular whipping cream, I did whip it first)
1 can Sweetened Condensed Milk
1 quart Chocolate Milk

Mix the ingredients together in a bowl, then pour into ice cream maker. My small ice cream maker only holds four cups, so this actually makes two batches. I just keep one half in the fridge and make it up in the next day or so. Just a note, IF you have any left-over (which doesn't happen very often) just put it in the freezer ... it does NOT freeze solid, but stays spoonably soft.

After stopping at Arbys one day for their ORANGE CREME SHAKE ... we experimented trying to recreate that too. After an unsuccessful attempt with orange juice, we had a successful version, using the basic recipe for the chocolate above, replacing the chocolate milk with orange cream soda (and a little whole milk to fill as needed) and the boys said it was yummy. That one doesn't tempt me ... which isn't a bad thing.

... we all scream for ICE CREAM!

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