Who invented ice cream? No one knows for sure! We do know that centuries ago people started making refreshing summer-time desserts by taking sweet cream (the richest part of milk) or custard (egg-based puddings) and cooling them down with ice. It was not until the late 19th century that “ice cream” was consumed by Americans across all socioeconomic levels.
According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the first print of the word “iced cream” was in 1688 and the term “ice cream” shows up in 1744. That corresponds approximately with the time when “modern” ice creams were first manufactured.
From the Olds Farmer Almanac’s History of Ice Cream Timeline:
1744: American colonists brought along recipes from Europe. On May 19, 1744, a group of VIP’s dined at the home of Maryland Governor Thomas Bladen. Present was a Scottish colonist who described “a Dessert…Among the Rarities of which is Compos’d, was some fine Ice Cream which, with the Strawberries and Milk, eat most deliciously.” This is the first written account of ice cream consumption in the new colonies.
1782: Ever hear how Martha Washington left a bowl of sweet cream on the back steps of Mount Vernon one night, and the next morning discovered ice cream? Nice story, but not true. George Washington did have, described in his ledger, “a cream machine for ice.”
As Melissa mentioned in her latest article, Thomas Jefferson’s Ice Cream Dream, our third president also liked an ice cream dessert. The type of ice cream Thomas Jefferson or George and Martha Washington would have enjoyed was very different from the ice cream we eat today. In the 18th century, egg yolks were added to sweet cream, sugar, and vanilla, and an ice bath of ice water was prepared to make ice cream. Today, I’m using an electric stand mixture and I’ll be substituting American Heritage Historic Chocolate Drink for the egg yolks to create a chocolate ice cream dessert.
Captain Jackson’s Chocolate Ice Cream
Makes approximately 4-6 servings.
Equipment: Electric mixer, small sauce pan, a covered freezable container
2 cups heavy cream
¼ cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup American Heritage Historic Chocolate Drink
2 Tbsp coconut oil
Prior Preparation: Chill mixing bowl and whisk attachment in freezer for at least an hour, over night is better, before making the ice cream. I like to lightly coat them, by running the bowl and whisk under cold water before putting them in the freezer.
In a small sauce pan over a low heat melt American Heritage Historic Chocolate Drink Mix with coconut oil, takes about 1-2 minutes, set sauce aside to cool.
Whip the heavy whipping cream in chilled mixing bowl with whisk attachment and until soft peaks form. Slowly add sugar and vanilla. Gently, fold in the American Heritage Chocolate Sauce. Place in a covered container that goes into the freezer for at least 6 hours or overnight. (If too thick, heat in microwave 10-20 seconds) Top with chocolate nibs.
The ice cream is delightful, so rich in chocolate goodness and easy to make. I’m sure Thomas Jefferson would have loved it and you will too!