Wednesday January 7, 2004

I Scream for Ice Cream

[Today's question is courtesy of purple ink ]
"I doubt the world holds for anyone a more soul-stirring surprise than the first adventure with ice cream".
-- Heywood Broun

What is your favorite flavor of ice cream? Hard or Soft-Serve? What type of sundae do you usually order?


Oh, yumm, ice cream. And me on a low-carb dieting adventure and not supposed to eat much ice cream anymore. Oh well, after I lose the weight, I can have it back (in small quantities)...

I am much more adventurous than Spouse. He usually sticks to vanilla, Vanilla Swiss Almond (Haden Dazs), coffee, black cherry, and chocolate; occasionally praline and butter pecan. I don't eat chocolate or black cherry but I'll try almost anything else! So we often share a coffee flavor or (at home) it's usually Vanilla S. A. (which goes equally well with strawberries, or bananas and hot fudge, or a Pepperidge Farm peach turnover :-)

If we're out, it depends what's available (and whether I'm sharing). By default, I prefer a vanilla with something in it to a flavored ice cream, but I make exceptions for certain flavors!

I think my standard favorite (starting when I was very young) is Mint Chip (which, growing up, we called Bittersweet Mint). The Gold Standard for this flavor is made by the Penn State University Creamery). When I was growing up we'd often visit the Creamery for ice cream on a warm summer afternoon or evening. I remember the large pretzel sticks you could buy to eat along with the ice cream (a surprisingly good combination). I even remember getting little cups of water from the drinking fountain to fend off ice cream headache!

After Mint Chip, I look for Peanut Butter Cup if it's available (vanilla ice cream with actual peanut butter cups broken into it, or the variation with gobs of peanut butter and chunks of dark chocolate). Double Rainbow makes a perfect Peanut Butter Cup ice cream; sadly, the Double Rainbow stores have mostly disappeared.

Another favorite, growing up, was Teaberry, available in Central and South-Eastern Pennsylvania but, sadly, too exotic for California :-( In the summer, if I can find it, fresh peach ice cream can be heavenly. The Penn State Creamery's fresh peach ice cream is World's Greatest as well. I miss it! (The Creamery will ship ice cream to anywhere in the US, but, sadly, the cost is, well, exorbitant. So far, I've held off; maybe someday... ;-) From November to January, I'm on the lookout for Pumpkin ice cream; a good Pumpkin ice cream tastes like a frozen piece of pumpkin pie, sans crust).

If I'm sharing with Spouse, it's usually a coffee flavor such as Baskin Robbins Jamoca Almond Fudge. I don't drink coffee much (and never more than a sip hot) but I love iced coffee and coffee ice cream. Occasionally we'll find a good butter pecan (my mother's favorite). We never share the mint or the peanut butter; (Rich says blech!).

Last week, at a Japanese restaurant, I had the most delightful mango ice cream! Rich thought it was too perfumey, but I thought it was delectable. His choice was banana (turned out to be banana nut) which could have been perfumey but was actually very subtle. The unchosen choice was green tea (which can be nice, but is not a favorite). I've also had sesame ice cream at a Japanese restaurant - very nutty! I was the only one of four people who liked it (but I loved it!).

Hard or soft-serve? Definitely hard; so many more choices (and refreezable of you don't eat it all at once). As to sundaes, we rarely have them, but Rich and I will share a hot sludge fundae on occasion (with or without bananas). Only I like caramel, or butterscotch, or marshmallow sauces; even the plain ol' Hershey chocolate syrup is something Rich can readily do without. Otherwise, is vanilla ice cream smothered in fresh strawberries considered a sundae? I guess it is; we love those in strawberry season (with or without a small slice of angel food cake ;-)

While I was growing up, my parent's church held a "strawberry festival" every June. A church member with a dairy donated the ice cream, the Ladies Guild sliced strawberries, guild members baked all sorts of cakes, and attendees paid a reasonable price for a big bowl of ice cream with stawberries and a slice of cake. It's where I discovered chocolate cake with peanut butter frosting (a once-a-year treat I never got at home).

My mother recalls when she was young, her family would visit an Amish family they were friends with. After dinner, the Amish family would serve huge bowls of freshly made (cranked!) ice cream. If I had a chance for a trip back in time, I'd like a chance to attend one of those dinners as a friend of my younger Mom!

Ah... ice cream. I don't know if my first "adventure with ice cream" was a "soul-stirring surprise", but I can't remember a time when I didn't love ice cream. And I have many happy "ice cream memories".

I Scream for Ice Cream ( in category Memes & Prompts ) - posted at Wed, 07 Jan, 11:46 Pacific | «e»