Sunday, April 20, 2014

The Truth About Ice Cream

Jeff and I have a really bad habit of picking up half-gallon tubs of ice cream when they go on sale. My first advice regarding ice cream: don't buy ice cream. Just go ahead and cut that stuff right out of your diet. Trust me, you'll be much happier in the long run.

That said, I recently discovered something incredible about ice cream that I feel the need to share. At the time, the revelation kind of blew my mind. It could revolutionize the way I prepare ice cream.

First, I should explain that I have what's considered an odd habit when eating ice cream: I use a fork instead of a spoon. This is a habit born from growing up eating very hard ice cream; spoons had trouble cutting through the thick, dense substance, so I used something that would pierce instead of scoop. This made bites much easier to attain, and since ice cream is mostly solid I didn't see any reason to use the spoon at all, since its primary function as opposed to other utensils is the fact that it has a place for liquids to pool.

Now, even with softer ice cream I don't see any reason to use a spoon for ice cream when a fork is available. I'm not sure why anyone would make a big deal about this habit, especially once I explain it.

Anyway, the reason I bring that up is because this revelation of mine is related to the concept of using a non-traditional utensil in the preparation of ice cream.

Surely you've all been there: a bucket of ice cream on the counter, using what spoons you have available to try and shovel some of that creamy disaster into your cup or bowl, whatever container you prefer.

If you're unlucky or unprepared, perhaps you're using a regular spoon, bending the poor utensil out of shape in your effort to get a decent scoop.

If you're a pro, perhaps you have one of those thick-handled scoopers, or perhaps the lunch lady spoons with the mechanism that forces the spoon to release its contents on command.

In any case, it's a long process--you shave off a layer that, hopefully, ends up as a pleasant-looking ball-shaped scoop. You plop that into your bowl, then the struggle begins anew.

Well, prepare to struggle slightly less. As I was reaching for the ice cream scooper again the other day, which was resting unwashed in the sink, I realized that I didn't feel like washing that thing today. Why should I? I tend to wash my dishes right after I use them, so I knew I wasn't the one who dirtied that scooper. Why should I clean someone else's dishes?

(This is a bad attitude for a roommate to have, by the way. Usually this mindset does not last long for me.)

And then I had a spark of creativity, as once again laziness proves to be the mother of invention. I noticed our knife block and wondered if I could simply cut out a few chunks of ice cream. Would that work?

The answer is: yes. You can simply cut ice cream out of the tub with a knife. It's not pretty (I would still use scoopers for, say, ice cream cones), but if you want a bowl full of oh God I'm going to get so fat off of this stuff, the simple knife is the most efficient way to do it.

I recommend serrated blades.

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