Thursday, June 21, 2007

Home made ice cream

With an old fashioned hand cranked ice cream freezer, my uncles would sit beneath a shade tree on old stumps and on the ground and pass it around, taking their turn in cranking. Salty water would begin to drain from the ice cream freezer and the handle would turn slower and slower until at last it stopped.

Grandma would bring out the bowls and spoons and a big spoon the likes of which I have never seen since.

My mouth waters in anticipation just thinking about it!

I don't know what memories, if any, home made ice cream will bring to you, but if you'd like to make your own, you can use about anything for an ice cream freezer that will fit into about anything else!

The container, into which you will put your ice cream recipe, must be completely sealable. Metal is best, but glass will work, too. Plastic does NOT work, as it doesn't conduct the cold very well.

A small coffee can with plastic lid works well for this, but you'll need to tape or tie the lid down. Place it in a larger coffee can, (or something similar) and put in enough ice, alternating with layers of rock salt two or three times, to completely fill the cavity between the two cans.

Seal the larger can well, then go play 'kick the can' with it, or roll it back and forth between kids, or just hold and jiggle it like you would to hand churn butter for anywhere from 10 to 20 minutes.

To check for 'doneness', you can take off the lid and stir. If its not solid enough, drain the water caused by melting ice, repack and shake or roll again.

Recipes for homemade ice cream vary from the super smooth, egg-and-cream-rich ices of the old south to the plain milk and sugar kind. The plain kind is safer unless you have access to real fresh eggs.

Plain Ice Cream

* 2 c whole milk (add cream or powdered milk to 2% or skim milk)
* 1/2 c sugar
* 1 tsp vanilla
* Flavoring, such as chocolate or fruit syrups, or powdered drink mix.
* 3lb coffee can with plastic lid, or something similar
* 1lb coffee can with plastic lid, or something similar
* 3/4 c rock, pickling or plain salt (larger crystals last longer)
* crushed ice

Mix everything but the salt and ice, and stir well. Follow the instructions above for making ice cream in a home made ice cream maker, or follow instructions for your own ice cream maker. Makes 3 to 4 generous servings.


  1. I remember homemade peach ice cream that I had an aunt's picnic when I was about 10 as incredibly delicious, but I have never tried to make it myself. Thank you for the recipe and instructions!

    BTW I thught of you last night when I had intractable insomnia. Sometimes the audiotapes help me get back to sleep but in the wee hours of this morning nothing was helping. Fortunately I don't feel as wiped out today as I usually do after a night like that.

  2. I hope you enjoy the ice cream and thanks for the thoughts. ;) Hope you sleep better tonight.

  3. I love the idea with the coffee cans and rolling it around between the kids. Little children would especially think this is fun, and would probably have memories for a life time.

    Take care,

  4. Kids usually do enjoy this, Terre. Making ice cream and things like that also teaches them that you don't have to buy everything from the store.

  5. Pat, I missed you at Frugal living for months, but tripped over you today while looking for coffee can ideas. Good to know your still out there raising the frugal flag. I hope you and yours are well this holiday season.

  6. Join us at Dollar Stretcher Community, forums for the wise and frugal! :)