Want Some Ice Cream, Punkin’?

I had an epiphany this week.

Not just any epiphany – a blog-altering epiphany.

I think I’ve been going about this the wrong way. More and more, I’ve been wanting to share my own personal and family recipes, but I thought they didn’t fit the bill. My French Toast recipe – while probably the best in the world – is not ethnic by any means, so I thought I should keep focusing on international foods. Did you think the same thing? Do you have a family recipe you love but wouldn’t say it’s “ethnic?” When I was typing that, it sounded like “quote-unquote ehhhthnic???” in my head.

I don’t want people to think that their favorite recipes aren’t good enough for my kitchen. After all, nothing about “Melting Pot Pie” screams fancy to me. It’s about throwing together all kinds of cuisines: ethnic, native, fusion, acquired, 5-star restaurant, 5-alarm chili, revamped leftovers, and everything in between (or outside of) those parameters. I want to share my French Toast recipe with you, even if that means giving away my secret ingredients. Yes. There are multiple secret ingredients.

And I want you to share your recipes with me. If I’ve heard of it before, I’ll probably compare it to what I’ve tried in the past and ask you about the things you did differently. If I’ve never heard of it in my life, you can probably bet I’m going to try it. I just want to find out what other people were raised on and the stories that go along with the recipes.

On that note, I bring you my first adventure into the world of non-ethnic recipes.

I was thinking about making my famous French Toast recipe, but I worked early and didn’t want to make breakfast – at a respectable hour or otherwise. But I’ve been craving something seasonal with a twist. My mom and her sister recently asked me about our plans for Thanksgiving, which reminded me of the cans of pureed pumpkin in my cupboard. I love to make chocolate muffins by mixing up canned pumpkin puree and Devil’s Food cake mix and baking it in my silicone muffin pan. Best… invention… EVERRR!

But I just baked something about 2 days ago – which I wasn’t planning on posting until this revelation – so I wasn’t in the mood to bake. So I thought, what’s the opposite of baking? Freezing!

I finally hunted down some instructions and decided to make Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream. Mmmmm…

Thanks to  Scoopalicious for the basic recipe, which I adapted quite a bit for my own taste and what was already in my fridge/cupboards.

Here’s what you’ll need:

1 can pureed pumpkin (NOT Pumpkin Pie Filling!)
1 half-pint carton of heavy whipping cream
1/2 C. lightly packed dark brown sugar (You can use light brown, but dark has more molasses, which is tasty!)
2 tsp. vanilla extract (or artificial vanilla extract substitute if you’re poor on a budget, like me)
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ginger
(And freezer bags, ice, and salt)

And here’s what you do:

First, combine your can of pumpkin and carton of whipping cream in a bowl.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next, mix in the brown sugar, vanilla extract, and spices. Pumpkin Pie Spice is cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and allspice. I think it is a 1:1:1:1 ratio, but I don’t know. I just like to kick up the cinnamon and ginger a bit, but you could just use 2 tsp. of Pumpkin Pie Spice if you want.

Mix everything up well and get ready to make ice cream. Now, we don’t have an ice cream machine. Shocking, right? Considering how many other kitchen appliances we have, you’d think this would be one of them. But alas, it’s not. So, I decided to make ice cream the old-fashioned way: Ziploc bags, of course!

I’ll admit, I didn’t follow the instructions I found at theKitchn.com as closely as I should have, but it worked out just fine. Cooking’s not always an exact science.

Take some ice and put it in a quart-sized Ziploc bag. Crush it up just a bit if you have huge ice cubes like we do, and add salt. I thought “1/2 cup of Kosher salt” sounded like a bit much, so I poured in about 2 Tbsp. and gave it a little shake to mix it in with the ice.

 

Next, fill a sandwich bag about 1/2-2/3 full with your pumpkin mixture. Seal it tight and place it in the bag with the ice. Top it with more ice and another Tbsp. salt.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now, shake the bag vigorously for 5-10 minutes. I was initially disappointed that we didn’t have any gallon bags, but then I figured that smaller batches would freeze faster and be easier to work with, which ended up being the case!

It froze in 5 minutes, which was perfect, because my hands were starting to get cold (even through my new gloves). Take out the inner bag and wipe off the top edge thoroughly before opening to prevent salt water from getting in your ice cream.

The corners of the inner bag will have the most contact with the ice (which will melt in the shaking process), so the mixture in the corners will be the most frozen. If you manipulate the bag while you’re shaking, it will freeze more evenly.

Scoop your ice cream into a bowl. If I had been thinking, I would have cut the corner off of the bag and squeezed the ice cream out to make it look like soft-serve. I topped mine with crunched up shortbread cookies to add some texture.

I have to say, this was a huge success. Especially with the shortbread cookies, it has every great component of Pumpkin Pie. I’ve never made ice cream before, but it was well worth it. And at least my lack of the right size bags didn’t end up like Hannah Hart’s “My Drunk Kitchen” Ice Cream. I have a feeling that’s because she gets drunk when she “cooks,” though… {WARNING: Hannah sometimes uses foul language in her videos, and this one is no exception. Again, because she gets drunk. If you are offended by such things, do not follow the link. I can summarize it for you… the bags leak everywhere and a lot of slipping occurs. I’d rather spoil the video for some than accidentally offend some of my followers.}

As for my Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream, next time I might try adding one of the following things: chopped walnuts, 2 Tbsp. peanut butter, or chopped pieces of toffee. That wouldn’t be Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream anymore, but I’m pretty sure it would be delicious.

I know this post was a lot wordier than usual. Maybe not. Maybe I talk this much all the time. But I meant what I said above. I’d love to try out your family recipes, your own concoctions, and find out what the rest of the world REALLY eats. That’s what I mean when I ask for authentic recipes. What do you actually make and eat? I want the genuine article. So send me your recipes, and follow the link in the sidebar to enter the “It’s a Melting Pot Pie All (or Nothing) American Chili Cook-Off” Recipe Contest.

Until the next taste,

Whitney

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