The neighborhood ice cream truck driver loathes my family. I have that dreaded clan of children who love to chase down the truck but never buy a thing. They are the Big Tease. They are that posse of kids who would just die for a popsicle created in the image of Sponge Bob or Dora, with eyes made of miniature gumballs, yet they were born to a mother too neurotic about sugar to allow her children to eat "real ice cream" more than once a month, if not once in an entire summer. Not to mention my frugality. Why spend $6.00 on ice cream truck ice cream that will serve three children one time when you can buy an entire half gallon at the store for half of that?
But I don't want an entire half gallon of ice cream in my freezer. I don't want my children eating the junk inside that half gallon, namely the saturated fat and processed sugar.
But now, thanks to my homemade ice cream maker, my kids can have their ice cream and eat it too!
Last week, In the middle of the Run To The Finish Green Smoothie Challenge, my blender died, prompting me to make an emergency blender run to the local wholesale club store with my children. In the kitchen appliance aisle, nestled between toasters and mixers, and the Magic Bullet and something called the Ninja, sat an ice cream maker, whose mere existence beckoned the cries of three ice cream deprived children. "Mommy! Mommy! Can we get it? Can we get it?"
I paused, as I do before this frugal mama tosses anything into her shopping cart. The price wasn't bad. But would we use it?
During my moment of contemplation, I realized that with a homemade ice cream maker, I could control the ingredients in the ice cream, meaning my kids would get less of the bad stuff and more of the not-so-bad, or even good stuff.
It was a sale, and an easy one, at that!
That night, we made our first batch of ice cream.
This is my revision of the Cuisinart basic vanilla:
2 cups vanilla almond milk
1 cup soy coffee creamer (I used the Silk Creamer original flavor)
3/4 cups of Sugar in the Raw
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
In a medium bowl, use a hand mixer or whisk to combine all ingredients. Mix for 1 – 2 minutes. Pour the mixture into the freezer bowl of the ice cream maker and let it mix until thickened, about 25 – 30 minutes.
Here is what my daughter said to me about 3 spoonfuls into eating:
"Mom, this is the best ice cream I've ever eaten in my life!"
I am sure there will be more flavor experimentation with the ice cream maker as the summer unfolds.
Oh, and that brownie the ice cream sits upon? That's a sugarless, flourless work in progress. I promise to share the perfected recipe and more ice cream success stories with all of you as they happen!
©2012 Ilene Evans