Oct 10, 2009

French Ice Cream

Last weekend I cooked dinner for my family and some visiting friends. We all like Thai food so I opted to cook a Thai red chicken curry, served with rice, noodles and some fresh spinach. For dessert I served fresh fruit (blueberries, strawberries, chopped banana and peach) accompanied by homemade vanilla ice cream ... freshly made. It was so fresh that I had the ice cream maker churning whilst we were still eating the main course! It was delicious - honestly, I am not just saying that; everyone at the table echoed the feeling with my husband saying it was the best vanilla ice cream he had ever tasted! The recipe, which is on ice-cream-recipes.com of course (just follow the link above), is what I call a custard base ice cream and uses a real vanilla pod, fresh eggs, fresh milk, sugar and fresh cream. Essentially this is "French ice cream" because it requires a cooked egg custard.

Many years ago, using the term French ice cream inferred it was the best possible ice cream that you might find on a restaurant menu. One example is that of the RMS Titanic's first and second class dining menus - "French Ice Cream" for first class passengers and "American Ice Cream" for second class. Read my "Ice Cream & Class Distinction On The RMS Titanic" post from 2008.

Since those days of course the world has changed a lot and I doubt very much if the French only eat French ice cream! They definitely have a passion for ice cream though and I know this for 2 reasons ....

  • Firstly, the statistics from ice-cream-recipes.com show a significant number of visitors from France, searching in French for the term "glaces maison" (homemade ice cream)
  • Secondly, a friend who enjoys taking holidays in France - especially in and around Poitou Charentes - tells me that the ice cream there is always very, very good.

There are of course lots of other 'national' variations on ice cream such as Italian ice cream but that's a post for another day!

Labels: , , , ,