Wait, don’t go away! I don’t have an ice cream maker. You can make this without one!
When we were sorting through the things from my grandmother’s storage unit a few years back, my husband came across one of Grandma’s recipe books. It has handwritten cards in her tight cursive, a few noting friends’ names or special instructions. (My personal favorite is the capitalized note on “Spice Drop Cookies” that says, “NO BLACK.” My husband would appreciate that.)
This recipe caught my eye because Grandma called it “Old-Fashioned Strawberry Ice Cream.” If it was old-fashioned when Grandma wrote out the card, who knows how long ago, what is it now? Antique?
Since I don’t have an ice cream maker, I’ve never attempted ice cream before. But all this one requires is a mixer – and requires is probably the wrong word! Can you imagine the pioneer women beating egg whites to soft peaks with just a whisk? Ow.
This ice cream is gelatin-based. From what I researched, gelatin was used as a stabilizer in store-bought ice creams before they discovered cheaper, yuckier things to use. The gelatin keeps the ice cream from forming big ice crystals, I think.
The flavor of this ice cream is really delicious, but unfortunately the texture is not great. It is a little grainy. I think the continuous churning from an ice cream maker is what gives the dessert its creaminess. I believe if you got the setting ice cream out a few times and beat it with a mixer, it would be much creamier.
I’m going to walk you through step by step so you can try this yourself if you want! Since it has raw eggs, you’ll want to use pasteurized eggs or ones that come from a chicken you know and trust.
Old-Fashioned Strawberry Ice Cream with Gelatin
- 1 envelope unflavored gelatin
- 1/4 c. cold water
- 2 eggs, separated
- 1 c. sugar, divided
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
- 2 c. crushed strawberries
- 2 c. light cream
Dissolve gelatin in cold water, whisking with a fork. Then my original recipe says “dissolve over hot water.” I filled a bowl with hot tap water and put the measuring cup with my gelatin water in it, letting get hot and the gelatin crystals dissolve.
In a large measuring cup or medium-sized freezer-safe container, combine egg yolks, 3/4 cup sugar, salt, vanilla, crushed berries, and cream. (To crush berries, you can use a potato masher. They should look something like this.)
Stir gelatin/water into the strawberry mixture. Freeze until firm.
Using a hand mixer (this is my immersion blender with whisk attachment), beat your egg whites to soft peaks, gradually adding 1/4 cup sugar as you beat.
Take your frozen mixture and dump it into a large, chilled bowl (the bowl that goes to your stand mixer, if you have one). If it won’t come out of the container you froze it in, you can microwave it for 30 seconds or so until it loosens.
Using a wooden spoon, break up the frozen mixture into chunks. With a mixer, beat over medium speed until the mixture is “fluffy-smooth.” Fold in egg whites. Spoon into freezer-safe containers and freeze until firm.
[This is the part where you could keep taking it out and beating it every 30 minutes or so to help the texture, I think.]
Grandma’s recipe says, “Serve as is or top each serving with sugared berries or with a spoonful of marshmallow creme.”
The ice cream stays soft enough that it scoops easily, but it’s not as soft as regular homemade ice cream. The gelatin helps firm it considerably.
I’ll be sharing some more recipes from my grandma’s binder in the coming weeks! It’s a fun summer adventure, right? Would you like to see her recipe for Spicy Meatloaf?
Added to Real Food Wednesday at Kelly the Kitchen Kop.