A Minor Hiccup

I do like to pay attention to the little things.  Especially the little things that might make the world a better place to be in (even if only for a moment) for the people around me.  Like remembering your friend’s favorite brand of chocolate when they are in pressing need of a little treat.  Or remembering how your colleague likes their coffee when it’s your turn for the morning coffee run.  Things like that.  Sometimes, every now & then, I am even quite good at it.  It’s a trait, I am sure, which was born out of a crazy combination of having parents for who nothing I did was ever good enough (never did crack that nut) & my own intrinsic desire to see other people smile.  Confession: in my human nature what I really wanted to say back there was make other people happy, but then we’d be off down that oh so slippery slope of how we don’t actually have the power to make another person happy, & that just doesn’t feel, at all, like the kind of repartee that should go alongside Candy Cane Ice Cream.

Alongside what?  Ah.  I suspect that last line made absolutely zero sense to anyone except me.  Sorry about that.  You didn’t even know we were talking about Candy Cane Ice Cream.  After all, you started reading without having the first clue where I was going with this whole choo-choo of thought.  Can you tell I just spent 2 weeks watching Thomas the Tank Engine with a 2-year-old?  Interspersed with episodes of Bob the Builder.  Can we fix it?  Yes we can!

I think it best if we now just get straight to the Candy Cane Ice Cream part before I lose you entirely. 

 Several weeks ago I was discussing some work stuff with Geoff.  He was in Chicago & I was in England, not that our locations matter in the slightest to…well…anything really.  Suddenly he said, “Oh I must go downstairs to the kitchen.  There’s a bowl of Candy Cane Ice Cream waiting for me & that’s my favorite.”  Ping went my mental OneNote.  It was quickly stashed away in the recesses of my noggin ready for Geoff’s next trip to Seattle.  Home-made Candy Cane Ice Cream would be his.  I hoped it would make him smile.

Now candy canes are not a big thing in England.  Well, they weren’t when I left just about 10 years ago.  In fact, they weren’t even “a” thing, let alone a “big” thing.  But now I have come to know them I find them quite adorable.  Such jolly little characters.  Don’t they just ooze jolly?

Knowing that this coming week would bring Geoff to Seattle with it, I realized that I had neither a recipe nor the ingredients to create his favorite treat.  The other minor hiccup being that since I had never eaten Candy Cane Ice Cream I didn’t even know what I was shooting for…I mean, what does {good} Candy Cane Ice Cream taste like?  What, for that matter, does it look like?  If I am totally honest, I didn’t even know Candy Cane Ice Cream existed.  But nevertheless, this weekend was do or die, since {great} ice cream is a bit of a process.  A process, I might add, that I find particularly therapeutic.  The making of it, not the eating; although the eating can be extremely therapeutic too, I’ve found.  If Geoff was to have ice cream on Wednesday, I needed to start making ice cream today.

Since I didn’t have a ton of time I decided to go the egg-less route & see where that got me.  Avec oeufs is…silkier, smoother, richer, softer…for when you want truly scrumptious ice cream; but no eggs can be pretty darned yummy too.  The real upside to egg-less is it’s a whole lot less of a process.  My egg-less route brought me exactly here:

Candy Cane Ice Cream 

  • 70 small (3″) candy canes
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1  1/3 cups sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 cups heavy cream
  • 3 drops peppermint oil (optional, if you want super-minty flavor)

Put 30 of the candy canes into some kind of crusher:  a grinder, a food-processor or even a zip-lock bag which you beat with a rolling pin.  Finely crushed candy canes is what you want.  How you get there, not so important.  Tip:  beating inanimate objects with a rolling pin can be a great stress reliever.

Put the crushed candy canes, sugar, salt & milk in a saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring until the sugar & candy canes are dissolved.  It’ll take about 10 minutes.  Think happy thoughts while you stir, watching the liquid in your pan turn pinker & pinker.  Unless you didn’t use the red & white striped candy canes, in which case it probably won’t get pinker, or even pink.

Carefully pour the hot {pink} liquid into a {glass} bowl & stir the heavy cream in, along with the peppermint oil if you are using it.  Cover and chill the mixture thoroughly in the ’fridge (overnight is good), then freeze it in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

While the sweet, pink, pepperminty mixture is churning, crush the remaining 40 candy canes into small pieces.  During the last minute of churning add the candy cane pieces to the mix.  As soon as the candy cane pieces are mixed in, spoon the ice cream into a container.  Cover & freeze.

Then lick the dasher.  You know you want to.

 

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  • Jhanjhri Shah - Is there a list “Just the Best in Universe”? if so, this icecream needs to go on that list!!!!

    Simply as AMAZING as the one who prepared it!

    Best,
    JhanjhriReplyCancel

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