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Friday, July 16, 2010

Homemade Ice Cream

I've always wanted to make homemade ice cream.  I had visions of sitting on the front porch as the kids played tag amongst the oak trees, fireflies punctuating the dusky evening sky with little dots of light.  I saw myself cranking the ice cream maker, a glass of lemonade by my side while Chad read Tennyson aloud to me, the sound of his voice rumbling, "Sunset and evening star, and one clear call for me!" mingling with the laughter of children and the breeze in the trees.

I envisioned calling for my children - all six of them - that the ice cream was ready.  They would line up, faces bright with smiles, as I dished luscious peach ice cream into their bowls.  Peaches from my own trees, just down the hill.  I can almost hear their choruses of "thank you, Mommy" and "you're the best mommy in the whole wide world."

Of course, that's when reality intrudes.  What child would ever say that without wanting something very, very badly.

My fantasy would be helped if we had a yard with oak trees, a porch and lived in a part of the country with fireflies.  I'm running ragged chasing two children.  Six would send me to a padded cell.  And the idea of Chad reading Tennyson to me is enough to make me laugh until I cry.  If I had changed my vision to him reading the latest baseball stats, well, then, I'd be closer to reality.

Still...the idea of homemade ice cream niggled in my brain until one day, a couple weeks ago, I made some using the sandwich bag method.  A bit frustrated with the amount of work, I borrowed my mother-in-law's ice cream maker and decided to make a go of it.

Of course, the ice cream maker hadn't been used in quite some time and I couldn't seem to get all the rust out of the can.  So off to the store where they were selling a little plastic number on clearance.  I got home, researched recipes and finally came up with banana ice cream.

I rounded up the ingredients: banana, vanilla, sugar, cream and salt.  Ice, of course, sat waiting in the sink.

I mixed everything together, layered my salt and ice and then...let electricity to it's magic.

A half hour later, we had smooth and creamy ice cream.  We pulled out the paddle and put the can in the freezer to "harden" it. 
It was well worth the wait.  While I'm not certain how cost-effective this process was, I have to say that it tasted better than store bought.
Mandy Dawson is a wife and mother of two living on the California Central Coast.  While not experimenting with random kitchen appliances, she can be found blogging at
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