Homemade ice cream was one of the highlights of my childhood because I had an aunt who seemed to have perfected the art and going to her house on weekends was a guarantee of something really good.
If memory serves me correctly, my aunt would make vanilla, strawberry, peach and coconut ice cream with her ice cream maker.
I think as a child the hardest thing about homemade ice cream made with an ice cream maker is the fact that you had to sit in the kitchen patiently watching your aunt make the ice cream, then you were asked to go out and play while the ice cream was in the freezer to set and many hours later, you could finally indulge in some delicious ice cream! The wait was painfully long, but well worth it in the end because nothing equals homemade ice cream.
It seems that the recession is giving way to so many forgotten pleasures and homemade ice cream is one of them.
If you look at popular brands of ice cream sold in grocery stores like Häagen Dazs or Ben & Jerry’s, you’ll notice that the price tag for those ice creams is dramatically different from other brands that use a lot of fillers and artificial ingredients. The great thing about Häagen Dazs or Ben & Jerry’s is they use few quality ingredients to make a tasty product, but as a result their tubs of ice cream are smaller and more expensive than cheaper brands.
Now, spending $4-6 on a Häagen Dazs or Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream tub of ice cream is not an issue if it’s for two or three people, but when you have a whole family to feed or if you are entertaining, that can add up and that’s why so many people are turning to good old homemade ice cream this summer and that’s why so many people are buying an ice cream maker!
I thought I’d spend some time reflecting on some of the health benefits of making your own homemade ice cream:
1) You control how much sugar you put in your recipe.
2) You control the quality of the ingredients, therefore you’re not forced to eat ice creams that contain a lot of fillers or artificial ingredients.
3) You can serve high quality ice cream to large crowds and you’re not limited or constrained by a tight budget.
4) You can fully make use of seasonal fruits.
5) You can take advantage of fruits that you’ll find in the bargain bin (they might not be ideal to eat fresh, but you can get a great deal and simply discard the bruised parts).
6) You serve your kids and entire family a dessert that’s healthier than the cheap brands you might have been buying.
7) This is such a fun activity for kids and a great time to introduce them to the joys of cooking (I guess in this case dessert making).
#8) You can let your imagination run wild because you are able to create any combination of ice cream your heart desires.
Buying an ice cream maker
I’d say that you’re looking at about $70-$150 for a good ice cream maker. I did notice that the Italian deluxe ice maker Lello 4980 Musso Lussino was selling at a whopping $699, while their entry point model (Lello 4090 Gelato Pro Quart Ice Cream Maker) was $399, but other brands are more affordable.
I noticed that some brands have a sleek and modern design like these ice makers:
You also have brands that have a more “old-fashioned” look to them (with a modern mechanism) like these ice makers: