We All Scream 

Hassle-free homemade ice cream with a past.


People need to know about this," says my mother. That "this" is a recipe for peppermint ice cream.

The recipe is decades and decades old, given to my mother by her mother-in-law when she and my father were newlyweds. Its official title is "World War II Ice Cream." The name reflects both its era and its ingenuity. Because sugar was rationed during the war, the recipe uses hard peppermint candies in place of loose sugar.

I recently made a batch because I had a yard sale.

Several years ago, somebody gave me an ice-cream maker — no occasion, just because. I greeted this kind gesture with a huff and said, "I don't want this!" I may have kicked the box for added emphasis.

It's the layering of the rock salt and ice that inevitably gets everywhere no matter what, that crank-y, grating noise, the hours and hours of waiting for the goods ... what's the point of putting out all that effort when something cheaper and just as tasty is available just around the corner at every convenience store?

I used the machine once (I have no memory of the results) and then put it in my attic and forgot about it until I was gathering stuff for the yard sale. It was a goner for sure, but guilty second thoughts — only used once — had me buying salt, milk, and cream. And then I had third thoughts about that peppermint ice cream.

My family traditionally makes it at Christmas, but it's especially delicious on hot summer days. Plus, it's easy — just three ingredients and, best of all, no ice-cream maker required.

I grate bittersweet chocolate to top it for added oomph. "When I want to be extra fancy, I serve it in homemade meringue shells," my mother says. "Tell them that." Consider yourselves told.

World War II Ice Cream

Makes 2 to 3 pints

1 lb hard peppermint candies

2 cups milk

1 pint whipping cream

In a large saucepan, melt candies in milk over medium heat, stirring frequently to avoid letting the candies

stick to the pan or the milk scald.

Let cool for half an hour or so. Fold in cream. Pour mixture into a container and put in freezer.

Stir after a few hours to avoid crystallization. Stir again a few hours later if needed. Let set overnight then enjoy.


With regard to the milk and cream, you can use low-fat milk and half-and-half, but I recommend the fattier stuff. It makes the ice cream richer.

Also, you must use the hard-candy peppermints rather than the soft kind. The recipe's biggest chore is unwrapping the candies, but this can be done while watching TV or you can enlist help and talk about how good this ice cream is going to be.


Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment



Intermission Impossible

Broadway Actor Charles Holt Brings Memphis Upstanders to Life

Music Blog

Rest in Peace Clay Hardee

Politics Beat Blog

Fincher Paid to Defeat Flinn in 8th Race, Publication Says

Intermission Impossible

Looking for a Halloween Costume? Theatre Memphis is Having a Yard Sale.

Politics Beat Blog

C-SPAN's Coming!

Politics Beat Blog

Guns to Blast and the Stars and Bars to Fly Again in Bartlett

Fly On The Wall Blog

Bob Corker Has Tiny Feet And It's Funny When He Stamps Them


More by Susan Ellis

Readers also liked…

© 1996-2016

Contemporary Media
460 Tennessee Street, 2nd Floor | Memphis, TN 38103
Visit our other sites: Memphis Magazine | Memphis Parent | Inside Memphis Business
Powered by Foundation