today's letter is I
I...is for >>>
I love ice cream.
Sadly I can't eat a lot of it, and only one particular brand, but that is probably a good thing.
It doesn't do to overdo the sweet things.
I went to Google and Wikipedia for a little information on the history of ice cream.
The post is quite long, and believe me, I left out a lot of the information I found.
Get a cuppa, or a bowl of ice cream, and settle in for a long read.
(There is info from several different sources (thanks to those who put it out there), so you'll notice a few different fonts or typefaces or what ever they are called. I just copied and pasted, then deleted.)
"Ice cream is a frozen dessert usually made from dairy products, such as milk and cream, and often combined with fruits or other ingredients and flavours.
Most varieties contain sugar, although some are made with other sweeteners. In some cases, artificial flavourings and colourings are used in addition to, or instead of, the natural ingredients.
The mixture of chosen ingredients is stirred slowly while cooling, in order to incorporate air and to prevent large ice crystals from forming. The result is a smoothly textured semi-solid foam that is malleable and can be scooped.
The meaning of the phrase "ice cream" varies from one country to another. Phrases such as "frozen custard", "frozen yogurt", "sorbet", "gelato" and others are used to distinguish different varieties and styles.
In some countries, such as the United States, the phrase "ice cream" applies only to a specific variety, and most governments regulate the commercial use of the various terms according to the relative quantities of the main ingredients.
In other countries, such as Italy and Argentina, one word is used for all variants. Analogues made from dairy alternatives, such as goat's or sheep's milk, or milk substitutes, are available for those who are lactose intolerant, allergic to dairy protein, or vegan.
The most popular flavours of ice cream are vanilla and chocolate.
In the Persian Empire, people would pour grape-juice concentrate over snow, in a bowl, and eat this as a treat, especially when the weather was hot. Snow would either be saved in the cool-keeping underground chambers known as "yakhchal", or taken from snowfall that remained at the top of mountains by the summer capital — Hagmatana, Ecbatana or Hamedan of today.
In 400 BC, the Persians went further and invented a special chilled food, made of rose water and vermicelli, which was served to royalty during summers. The ice was mixed with saffron, fruits, and various other flavours.
Ancient civilizations have served ice for cold foods for thousands of years.
The BBC reports that a frozen mixture of milk and rice was used in China around 200 BC.
The Roman Emperor Nero (37–68) had ice brought from the mountains and combined it with fruit toppings.
Arabs were perhaps the first to use milk as a major ingredient in the production of ice cream.
They sweetened it with sugar rather than fruit juices, and perfected means of commercial production. As early as the 10th century, ice cream was widespread among many of the Arab world's major cities, including Baghdad, Damascus, and Cairo.
It was produced from milk or cream, often with some yogurt, and was flavoured with rosewater, dried fruits and nuts. It is believed that the recipe was based on older Ancient Arabian recipes, which were, it is presumed, the first and precursors to Persian faloodeh.
One hundred years later, Charles I of England was, it was reported, so impressed by the "frozen snow" that he offered his own ice cream maker a lifetime pension in return for keeping the formula secret, so that ice cream could be a royal prerogative.
There is no historical evidence to support these legends, which first appeared during the 19th century.
Ice cream was introduced to the United States by Quaker colonists who brought their ice cream recipes with them. Confectioners sold ice cream at their shops in New York and other cities during the colonial era. Ben Franklin, George Washington, and Thomas Jefferson were known to have regularly eaten and served ice cream. First Lady Dolley Madison is also closely associated with the early history of ice cream in the United States. One respected history of ice cream states that, as the wife of U.S. President James Madison, she served ice cream at her husband's Inaugural Ball in 1813.
Around 1832, Augustus Jackson, an African American confectioner, not only created multiple ice cream recipes but also invented a superior technique to manufacture ice cream.
In 1843, Nancy Johnson of Philadelphia was issued the first U.S. patent for a small-scale handcranked ice cream freezer. The invention of the ice cream soda gave Americans a new treat, adding to ice cream's popularity. The invention of this cold treat is attributed to Robert Green in 1874, although there is no conclusive evidence to prove his claim.
The ice cream sundae originated in the late 19th century. Several men claimed to have created the first sundae, but there is no conclusive evidence to support any of their stories. Some sources say that the sundae was invented to circumvent blue laws, which forbade serving sodas on Sunday. Towns claiming to be the birthplace of the sundae include Buffalo, Two Rivers, Ithaca, and Evanston. Both the ice cream cone and banana split became popular in the early 20th century. Several food vendors claimed to have invented the ice cream cone at the 1904 World's Fair in St. Louis, MO, USA.
Europeans were eating cones long before 1904.
In the UK, ice cream remained an expensive and rare treat, until large quantities of ice began to be imported from Norway and the US in the mid-Victorian era. A Swiss-Italian businessman, Carlo Gatti, opened the first ice cream stall outside Charing Cross station in 1851, selling scoops of ice cream in shells for one penny.
The history of ice cream in the 20th century is one of great change and increases in availability and popularity. In the United States in the early 20th century, the ice cream soda was a popular treat at the soda shop, the soda fountain, and the ice cream parlor. During American Prohibition, the soda fountain to some extent replaced the outlawed alcohol establishments such as bars and saloons.
Ice cream became popular throughout the world in the second half of the 20th century after cheap refrigeration became common. There was an explosion of ice cream stores and of flavours and types. Vendors often competed on the basis of variety.
Howard Johnson's restaurants advertised "a world of 28 flavors".
Baskin-Robbins made its 31 flavours ("one for every day of the month") the cornerstone of its marketing strategy. The company now boasts that it has developed over 1000 varieties."
(really? over 1000? can anyone list them for me?)
"One important development in the 20th century was the introduction of soft ice cream. A chemical research team in Britain (of which a young Margaret Thatcher was a member) discovered a method of doubling the amount of air in ice cream, which allowed manufacturers to use less ingredients, thereby reducing costs.
It made possible the soft ice cream machine in which a cone is filled beneath a spigot on order. In the United States, Dairy Queen, Carvel, and Tastee-Freez pioneered in establishing chains of soft-serve ice cream outlets."
soft-serve, not my favourite, I prefer the harder scooping type.
"Technological innovations such as these have introduced various food additives into ice cream, the notable one being the stabilizing agent gluten, to which some people have an intolerance. Recent awareness of this issue has prompted a number of manufacturers to start producing gluten-free ice cream.
The 1980s saw thicker ice creams being sold as "premium" and "super-premium" varieties under brands such as Ben & Jerry's, Chocolate Shoppe Ice Cream Company and Häagen-Dazs.
Before the development of modern refrigeration, ice cream was a luxury reserved for special occasions. Making it was quite laborious; ice was cut from lakes and ponds during the winter and stored in holes in the ground, or in wood-frame or brick ice houses, insulated by straw. Many farmers and plantation owners, including U.S. Presidents George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, cut and stored ice in the winter for use in the summer. Frederic Tudor of Boston turned ice harvesting and shipping into a big business, cutting ice in New England and shipping it around the world.
Ice cream was made by hand in a large bowl placed inside a tub filled with ice and salt. This was called the pot-freezer method. French confectioners refined the pot-freezer method, making ice cream in a sorbetière (a covered pail with a handle attached to the lid). In the pot-freezer method, the temperature of the ingredients is reduced by the mixture of crushed ice and salt. The salt water is cooled by the ice, and the action of the salt on the ice causes it to (partially) melt, absorbing latent heat and bringing the mixture below the freezing point of pure water. The immersed container can also make better thermal contact with the salty water and ice mixture than it could with ice alone.
The hand-cranked churn, which also uses ice and salt for cooling, replaced the pot-freezer method. The exact origin of the hand-cranked freezer is unknown, but the first U.S. patent for one was #3254 issued to Nancy Johnson on September 9, 1843. The hand-cranked churn produced smoother ice cream than the pot freezer and did it quicker. Many inventors patented improvements on Johnson's design.
An unstable demand for his dairy products often left him with a surplus of cream, which he made into ice cream. He built his first ice cream factory in Seven Valleys, Pennsylvania, in 1851. Two years later, he moved his factory to Baltimore. Later, he opened factories in several other cities and taught the business to others, who operated their own plants. Mass production reduced the cost of ice cream and added to its popularity.
The development of industrial refrigeration by German engineer Carl von Linde during the 1870s eliminated the need to cut and store natural ice, and, when the continuous-process freezer was perfected in 1926, commercial mass production of ice cream and the birth of the modern ice cream industry was underway.
Ice cream can be mass-produced and thus is widely available in developed parts of the world. Ice cream can be purchased in large cartons (vats and squrounds) from supermarkets and grocery stores, in smaller quantities from ice cream shops, convenience stores, and milk bars, and in individual servings from small carts or vans at public events.
In Turkey and Australia, ice cream is sometimes sold to beach-goers from small powerboats equipped with chest freezers.
Some ice cream distributors sell ice cream products from traveling refrigerated vans or carts (commonly referred to in the US as "ice cream trucks"), sometimes equipped with speakers playing children's music.
Ice cream vans in the United Kingdom make a music box noise rather than actual music."
This seems like an appropriate place to sit and eat your ice cream.
I...is for Ice Cream.