We were frozen in for my daughter's birthday this week, which meant we couldn't go out and buy her ice cream.
On the other hand, Daddy's work got canceled, so she was excited about that. But no ice cream. And HOW can you have a birthday without chocolate ice cream????
Well, we didn't have ice cream, but we sure had lots of snow..... So I went online and found this article on making ice cream without an ice cream maker.
Then I needed a recipe. The ones in the article above wouldn't work-- we had no cream on hand. And we couldn't go out and buy cream-- if we could, we could have just picked up a container of Breyers! (My child has corn allergies and Breyers is one of the few corn-free brands on the market.)
So I googled around some more as my illiterate but anxious child peered over my shoulder. And then I found this Chocolate gelato recipe. Milk- check. Sugar - check. Cocoa -check.
Corn starch??? Well, we'd have to substitute. I used a bit of mashed potato (hey, potatoes have starch, right? Don't judge me! I had a sniffling birthday girl desperately hoping for chocolate ice cream!)
So I followed the directions and chilled it in a sink full of snow---- stirring periodically. The snow in the house was a huge novelty for all of us girls, and we felt like "Little House in the Small Town." After about 4 hours it STILL wasn't done, so I put it on the porch for an hour (it was -5 out) stirred every 10 minutes, and voila!
If I'd had another 2 hours, it might have firmed up better--but as it was, it was milk-shake consistency and dark chocolate and the kids proclaimed it amazing.
My husband commented that now he knew why ice cream was so expensive--it takes FOREVER to make....
But it was definitely a learning experience. We had history, math, science, emotional growth (don't freak out, kiddo, we'll find a way to make a chocolate dessert!), and a healthy dose of google-skills (look, if I use 5 search terms, the answer to my question magically appears on the top of the list!)