How to Make Homemade Ice Creams

Learn to make homemade ice creams, sorbets, granitas and frozen yogurts.

| June/July 1998

  • 168-072-01
    Make this delicious strawberry frozen yogurt on a hot summer day or any other day you'd like!

  • 168-072-01

Once upon a time, an ice cream cone cost only ten cents. You could walk into a drug store with your ice-cream-loving dad and have a seat at the soda fountain.

It didn't take long to decide; the only flavors available were vanilla, chocolate, and orange sherbet in one of those Styrofoam cones. On those hot summer nights, the only problem was licking the ice cream before it melted all over your hand. Then the "31 flavors" chain came on the scene. That was heaven, but the dilemma was making up one's mind, staring endlessly into the glass cases while the mint-chocolate-chip dad waited impatiently. No one felt even a tinge of guilt devouring such a high-fat, sugary, additive-filled treat. No one knew about such things; ignorance was bliss.

Fast-forward to the '90s. (I didn't say that was my memory. That would make me too old.) Supermarket aisles are filled with designer ice creams and sorbets. Frozen yogurt stands can be found in bizarre places such as airports. Upscale coffee shops and book stores feature granitas. It's just too much. Life was so uncomplicated and tranquil when there were only three flavors. If you can stand just two more flavors, here are some frozen treats that won't cause even a tinge of guilt (now that we know better).

Homemade ice creams are a great way to use up ripened summer fruit. An ice cream maker is good to have because it's faster and easier but all you really need is a blender and a freezer to beat the heat. Homemade ice cream is softer than commercial ice cream, so don't expect it to get very firm. It should be just hard enough to scoop. In fact, it tastes best a little mushy because once ice crystals are formed, some of the texture and flavor is gone. After the ice cream is done, it's best to eat it within two hours. Otherwise, remove it from the freezer about 15 minutes before eating to let it thaw. Mush it around a bit and it's ready to eat. Get those cones ready...

Method I: Ice Cream Machine

George Washington had one of the first ice cream machines in this country. Hopefully yours is technologically superior to his. If you have a recent ice cream maker, it's probably the kind that requires you to freeze a metal canister before making ice cream. This requires you to plan ahead by placing the canister in the deep freeze or the coldest part of your refrigerator's freezer at least 24 hours in advance. The ice cream mixture will need to be very cold before pouring it into the canister. Otherwise, follow the instruction booklet.

Method II: Freeze 'n' Whisk

You guessed it. You're the machine.

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