Many stories herein are subject to the faulty, and sometimes creative, memory of the blog owner and should not be taken as factual, although the names and events are real! Kind of.
Friday, July 03, 2009
Home Made Ice Cream Anyone?
This afternoon I made a batch of home-made ice cream and transferred it to a Blue Bunny Ice Cream bucket to put in the freezer in preparation for tomorrow's Fourth of July Supper Feast at my parents.
I was all alone.
In my air conditioned kitchen with my electric ice cream freezer. With a bag of ice from the store along with store bought milk, eggs and cream.
And I thought back to when I was a kid and we made home made ice cream. It was a lot of work and a lot of fun and was not a job that could be done in the house alone!
Way back in time, long long ago, when all clothes were made at home of polyester and my bike had a banana seat, Ice Cream could take a village to make!
First, Mom had to be prepared with ice. We got some of our milk in paper cartons--you know like you have at school. Only they weren't those little puny half pint size--they were the big old gallon and half gallon size. After we drank the milk, they were washed thoroughly, filled with water and placed in the deep freeze. Then when it was time for ice cream, the cartons of ice were brought out and smashed up with a hammer!
Then we had to have milk. Our neighbors to the south had milk cows and most of our milk came from them. Someday perhaps I'll post about skimming the cream off the top of the milk every morning before breakfast! And home made butter and cottage cheese.....mmmm mmmm good!
But I digress--milk and cream were never in short supply. We just got it almost straight from the cow down the road! And eggs were gathered fresh everyday from our chicken house.
Mom mixed up the ice cream and poured it into the can. We broke up the ice to fit around the can and sprinkled it with salt from a sack of cow salt in the barn. Someone was assigned the job of washing off the front porch with the garden hose because that was where the big job of freezing the ice cream took place!
My grandparents had to be there because, in my memory, it was Grandad Marvin's job to crank the ice cream. We all wanted to turn the handle too, but you know how long our attention span for that was! If it was the Fourth of July, or anywhere near the Fourth, we were distracted with blowing up things and seeing how many fire crackers we could string together to pop. When the ice cream began to freeze and the handle got harder to turn, we kids took turns sitting on top of the freezer to keep it from moving around. A towel between our seat and the ice cream freezer was necessary to keep our bottom from freezing! It was the coolest seat in the house so I'm sure there was always an argument over whose turn it was to sit on it!
When the ice cream was hard and the handle could be cranked no more, additional salt and ice was poured over it and the whole thing was covered with an old quilt so the ice cream could ripen.
After supper, the can was freed from its icy prison and all the kids clamored to lick the ice cream dasher--made of metal and good for tongues to stick to! Then we ate and ate and ate till all that frozen deliciousness was gone! There was never any left to stick in the freezer for later!
At the end of the evening, when crickets were chirping and the stars were winking, my dad would carry the bucket of salty water out to the middle of the road and pour it out. A perfect ending to a perfect day!
Tomorrow night (Fourth of July) we will once again be at my parent's house. There will be kids running around with firecrackers and punks and everyone will be telling them, 'Be careful with that thing, someone's gonna get burned."
We will feast on brisket and potato salad, coleslaw and desserts and of course, home made ice cream. I made vanilla and Mom is making peach with home grown peaches and she'll use eggs from her chickens. And we'll have made it in the comfort of our air-conditioned houses, using electric freezers. And it will taste as good as the ice cream from the past, but none of those fire cracker popping kids are going to be able to tell their children about holding the ice cream maker down and freezing their tails off in the process!
I am going to fill that empty milk jug with water and freeze it.
Just in case.....