My children scream a lot.
Luckily, most of the time it’s for ice cream!
While we love visiting all the local creameries, there’s also something a little fun about making our own.
With all the kitchen gadgets these days, sure, we could add an ice cream machine to the arsenal but when you’re doing it the old fashioned way, it might as well be truly old fashioned.
You’ll need to gather a few basic supplies.
The coffee cans might be the trickiest — you’ll want a larger size — usually in the 30-ounce range, and then a smaller size around 9-11 ounce size.
If you can’t find the larger size in your regular grocery store, try a bulk or office store as they sell larger sizes (and plus, who doesn’t need more coffee?)
Now, some companies will trick you into thinking it’s the tin kind but you might find they are instead a thick silver cardboard.
Feel for the ribbing and make sure you have the right material for your ice cream “maker.”
You’ll also want some thick, waterproof tape like duct or electrical tape.
The ingredients are relatively simple — so simple in fact, I loaded the supplies into our “glamper” for a project to keep the kids busy when our toes weren’t getting wrinkled in the campground pool.
You’ll need ice, a pint of half and half, one-third cup of granulated sugar, and flavor and toppings.
You’ll also need a box of rock salt, which some companies have now started to market specifically as ice cream salt.
For toppings you stay basic or go crazy, but it helps to have any stir-ins chilled or frozen.
Some ideas are chunks of strawberries or other berries, mini M&Ms or chocolate chips, or cookie crumbles.
Extracts can also pack in some flavor — vanilla, lemon, mint to name a few. Get creative and add a dash or two.
First, pour into the smaller can the half and half and granulated sugar, followed by stir-ins and extracts.
Tape the lid with duct tape and set in the center of the larger can.
Tuck in pieces of ice and layer with rock salt.
Place the lid on and tape around it.
Tape it again for particularly rambunctious children.
Now the fun starts. Set a timer for 12 minutes and get the kids to roll it back and forth.
We rolled it back and forth on the picnic table and then gently kicked it on the ground.
They took turns rolling it by themselves.
We shook it up and down. It’s fun to see the frost develop.
At this point, peel back that tape and peek at your ice cream. Likely, you’ll need to refill on ice and rock salt.
If I had older kids, I would chat with them about salt and how we use it to melt snow, how do they think it works, and other science-y facts.
Go another 12 minutes and see where you end up.
The thickest ice cream will be against the sides of the smaller can, and might be soft in the middle.
Don’t be impatient — it will turn into a scoop-able thickness.
You may need to go another 12 minutes.
When it’s done, you’ll want to eat it fast as it melts quicker than ice cream that has been in the freezer.
Not that we’ve ever been folks to eat ice cream any other way than quickly.
Wash out your coffee can and put it away until next time.
Because, with results like these, there will be a next time.
Say ‘Can-do’ to homemade ice cream
My children scream a lot.