Making ice cream has certainly changed since I was a youngster. I remember the old hand-cranked freezer — we didn’t have electric freezers back then. It was a little difficult to continue turning that crank when the ice cream became firm. I don’t know this from experience because I was too small for that job. However, my dad would look around for someone to sit on a quilt that had been folded and placed over the ice-filled freezer as he continued to turn the crank, and I was always glad to volunteer.
One of the hardest parts for me was that my dad always thought the homemade specialty needed to “sit for a while” after it had reached the firm stage. He would pour off any water that had accumulated in the freezer and repack it with ice and plenty of ice-cream salt. Then he would place the old quilt back on top and put it aside. I just stood by licking my lips and anticipating that first delicious scoop.
One of my favorite flavors was my dad’s banana ice cream. I wish I had the recipe he used — his version was special. Other favorites were, and still are, traditional vanilla, strawberry ice cream made with fresh strawberries and of course, fresh peach ice cream.
Several years ago, I decided to combine fresh strawberries and fresh peaches in the same ice cream, though I can’t remember why. After reading the recipe, it seems that I started out trying to make strawberry ice cream and maybe didn’t have quite enough strawberries. This seems possible because I only added a half cup of peaches. I probably had one fresh peach on hand and just decided to throw it in and see how it turned out. Sounds like something I would do. But as I recall, it tasted good.
If you want to try the following recipe but had rather not mix flavors, just use 2 cups of either mashed fresh strawberries or mashed fresh peaches.
And if you prefer sherbet, you might like the following recipe for Orange Pineapple Sherbet from Joan Ross’ cookbook “Recipes from the Parsonage.”
Whether it’s ice cream or sherbet, both recipes will bring a smile to the face of anyone who looks forward to a bowl of homemade frozen delight.
STRAWBERRY PEACH ICE CREAM
1 ½ cups mashed fresh strawberries
½ cup mashed fresh peaches
1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
1 (12-ounce) can evaporated milk
1 cup half and half
2 cups milk
1 cup sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Additional milk to fill the freezer canister
Combine strawberries and peaches. Stir in the condensed milk, evaporated milk, half and half and milk. Add sugar, salt and vanilla extract. Stir until well blended. Pour into ice-cream canister and add additional milk to the proper level for your ice-cream freezer.
ORANGE PINEAPPLE SHERBET
1 large can crushed pineapple (do not drain)
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 (2-liter) bottle orange soda
Mix pineapple and milk in drum of ice-cream freezer. Add orange soda to the fill line. Freeze according to the directions given with your freezer.
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