If you join me on Tuesdays for my food column, you may notice that I like the words “fast” and “easy,” not to mention “inexpensive” and “good for you,” and this recipe incorporates at least the first two. Even with our trusty goats providing half the dairy product we need for this dessert, whipping cream from the store — even Costco — isn’t cheap. And while we use the freshest, best ingredients we can find, I’m not sure if ice cream, on a regular basis, qualifies as “good for you.”
But be assured that what you make with this recipe is definitely better for you than what you find in the stores.
And speaking of what you find in the stores, I look for rBST-free products — rBST being the synthesized hormone added by some dairy farmers to their herds to increase production of milk, as if low milk production were a problem in our country. According to the FDA,
“FDA is concerned that the term ‘rbST free’ may imply a compositional difference between milk from treated and untreated cows rather than a difference in the way the milk is produced. Without proper context, such statements could be misleading. Such unqualified statements may imply that milk from untreated cows is safer or of higher quality than milk from treated cows. Such an implication would be false and misleading.”
Really now. Well, as a consumer, I like the freedom to make the choice myself, and I look for rBST-free whipping cream, but it’s frequently difficult to determine if a product is rBST-free because of industry and government pressure on manufacturers to make this information really, really small and hard to find.
But this is how I find it: if there is a statement, generally on the back, announcing that the FDA finds no difference between milk from treated and untreated cows, then it’s highly likely that the product you’re holding is rBST free, and somewhere, in an obscure difficult to find place, you will find that information. If the stuff were in the product, the manufacturers generally keeps the fact quiet because they know — even if the FDA refuses to acknowledge this — that many people don’t believe the reassuring statements. Follow the money.
Well, that’s my bovine growth hormone diatribe for the week, so let’s get to the ice cream. Start it this afternoon, stick it in the freezer, and it will ready for dessert tonight:
Chocolate Chip Ice Cream — makes roughly 1.5 quarts (theoretically, this makes two quarts, but scooped out, it looks like 1.5)
2 cups whipping cream(does not have to be ultra-pasteurized)
2 cups whole milk (does not have to be from goats)
1 cup sugar (we use Wholesome Sweeteners Fair Trade Organic Sugar that we find at Costco. Good stuff)
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup chocolate chips, chopped
Whisk together the sugar and milk until the sugar is fully dissolved. If you use the organic stuff, this will take a little longer because the granules are not as fine as conventional sugar.
Once the sugar is fully dissolved in the milk, whisk in the whipping cream and vanilla until fully blended. Don’t get too enthusiastic with the whisking here, or you may start beating the whipping cream up.
Pour the mixture into your ice cream container, and now is a good time to mention that we LOVE our Cuisinart 2-quart ice cream maker that we bought at Costco (do you get the idea that I spend a lot of time at that place?) No ice, no rock salt, no noisy noisy — you stick the 2-quart freezer bowl in, well, the freezer until the magic freezing liquid between the insulated walls is frozen; pour in the ice cream mixture, assemble the unit, turn it on, and let it go for 30-40 minutes.
In the last five minutes of mixing, when the ice cream is thickened, add the chopped chocolate chips. Empty the contents into a freezer safe container and let it solidify, in the freezer, for a couple hours.
Fast, easy, and five ingredients — all of which you can recognize and pronounce.
Does this ice cream cost less than what you get at the store? Well, sort of. If you buy the cheap stuff that tastes like the outside of the box, probably not, but if you compare it to the finest out there — yes, and it’s a better product because it contains no artificial ingredients or unpronounceable chemicals, always a good thing to reach for in our eating habits.
Actually, most of the time when we make something ourselves, we make a better product for less, and this is what I talk about in my book, Live Happily on Less — 52 Ways to Renovate Your Life and Lifestyle. I’ve taken 30 years of sensible living habits and put them into a series of short, easy-to-read essays that don’t make you feel stupid, because I really don’t like people making other people feel stupid.
As one Amazon reviewer put it:
“This book was so easy to read, great sense of humor made it enjoyable. I love that it was more based on attitude and storytelling than hard and fast rules. Up there with my favorites.”
This article has been linked to A Wise Woman, A Little R and R, Deep Roots at Home, Wholehearted Home, Hope in Every Season, Raising Homemakers, Simply Helping Him, Holistic Squid, Mama BZZ, Day 2 Day Joys, Kelly the Kitchen Kop, Walking Redeemed, Intentionally Domestic, Growing Home, Coastal Charm, Memories by the Mile, Teaching What Is Good, Mop it Up Monday, Little House in the Suburbs, My Joy Filled Life, Alderberry Hill, Nourishing Joy, Natural Living Monday, The Prairie Homestead, A Blossoming Life, Moms the Word, Mama Diane,