Thursday, September 13, 2007

Ice Cream Bribery

I'm a mean mother. There's no two ways about it. Ask any of my kids and they will confirm it. Mean, cruel, heartless to the bone. Yes, I gave in and let them have a puppy (now known as The Horrible Little Dog). Yes, I OK'd a Nintendo system, opening up the gates of Hades into my family room. Yes, I sat in the rain through many baseball games and swim meets. But I'm still a horrible mother. Why, you ask?

I have never given a child of mine money for the ice cream man. Never. Not once.

Around here the first sign of summer has nothing to do with sunshine, or vacation. The true harbinger of summer is the evening siren call of the ice cream man, driving around with an amplifier mounted on his car playing an annoying, tinny version of Turkey in the Straw or a ragtime tune. Kids are conditioned with a Pavlovian response - as soon as they hear this tune they automatically turn to Mom and whine, "Can I have money for an ice cream? Please, please, pleeeeeeeaaase?"

And I have never said yes. What I've said is, "We've got popsicles in the freezer. You may have one of those." Or when feeling particularly frugal I put juice or yogurt into popsicle molds and let the kids have those. They weren't impressed. Their friends were running off with fistfuls of cash to buy frozen treats from Ice Cream Joe and they were eating frozen, icy yogurt pops. Euww. No, not a good mother at all.

But lately I've been thinking about the future, contemplating how I'll spend my final days. Will my children take the first opportunity to send me to a far off nursing home where I'll spend the remainder of my life sitting in a hallway, alone, talking to myself, and accosting random stranger, hoping they've come to visit me?

With such a grim vision in front of me, I've mended my ways. No, I still don't give the kids money to chase down the ice cream man, but I did make Drumsticks, an ice cream truck staple. Homemade peanut butter ice cream in a sugar cone, dipped in semi-sweet chocolate, sprinkled with chopped peanuts. With a bribe like this I'm sure I won't spend my final years alone in a nursing home. I'm positive the kids will visit once in a while. Won't they?

Bribery Drumsticks
adapted from Ice Cream! by Pippa Cuthbert & Lindsay Cameron Wilson

2-1/4 cups (500 ml) whole milk
1 cup (250 g) smooth peanut butter
3/4 cup (150 g) extra-fine sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
5 oz (150 g) semisweet chocolate, chopped
1/4 cup (30 g) dry roasted, salted peanuts, chopped
8 ice cream cones

Combine the milk and sugar in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Stir till the sugar dissolves then add the peanut butter. Stir until smooth. Stir in the vanilla extract. Remove the saucepan from the heat, cool, then chill in the refrigerator. Freeze in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions. Spoon into an airtight container and freeze for at least 2 hours.

Have a few glasses ready to hold the cones upright. Melt the chocolate in a bowl over simmering water, being careful not to let any water or steam get into the chocolate. Remove from the heat and cool slightly. Working quickly, scoop the ice cream into the cones. Spoon the chocolate over the top, sprinkle with chopped nuts and place cones in the glasses. Freeze for 15 minutes, then play Turkey in the Straw and watch the kids come running!


Tartelette said...

You and your daughter know how to team up wot make my mouth water. Your ice cream and her pictures are just too good!

Sarah C. said...

haha you weren't supposed to do the two iteams I shot together back-to-back. You are supposed to hide them so people don't notice how uncreative I really am with food photography.

I also notice you left out certain ice cream men that went around our neighborhood that we gave certain non-politically correct names too... wise choice mother.

Ahhh for being cheap. You've passed it on to me I must say. Oh well.

Sean said...

Agreed with the sister - To this day I still can't bring myself to buy something from the ice cream man. Kind of hard to justify when, for the price of ONE of his wares I could go down to the store and buy a whole box of them. Well, almost.

Melinda said...

Guess your children aren't that hard done by! I am sure you will be loved and tendered by your family when you are elderly... but they will not buy you ice cream from a van how ever many times you ask!
There is an Old Folks Home just outside of Burford, Oxfordshire. As we drive by my husband always says it sounds quite nice and wants to put his name down for it later. The name of the place is the Rampant Cat House Retirement Home. Hmmm.

gigi said...

I'm building a guest house for you to stay in! Just make sure you bring the drumsticks :)

Cate said...

My son has been on an ice cream kick lately (most decidely because the school lets them buy a treat after lunch) - he would be all over your ice cream. The pictures look divine!

Peabody said...

I am a drumstick fanatic...I love this idea. I so want to run out and make these!

Amy said...

Drumsticks! Why pay exorbitant prices when you can have 100 times better ice cream at home!

Rose&Thorn said...

I have to get an ice-cream maker this year. You are an inspiration.

Valli said... kind to your children because they pick out your nursing home!I think you have sealed your fate with these delicious drumsticks. Better than any purchased from the ice cream truck I'm sure! I never much liked the ice cream truck because he would play "Valdery, Valdera..." well, you know the rest with a name like Valerie.

Blue Zebra said...

Lynn I just love reading your posts. :D Look, start feeding me icecream and you can come live with B and me in our zebra compound! ;)

They sound yummy as usual!

Anne said...

More or less mothers think alike...

With an ice cream like that, any child will be delighted!

VeggieGirl said...

Lynn, with your incredible frozen treats, I can't imagine why your children would WANT to fork over cash for the ice cream man's sub-par ice cream novelties. this cone is gorgeous!!

Aimée said...

I wish you were my mom.
Enough said!

Dee Light said...

Oh, My!!!!! Homemade drumsticks!!!

We don't buy from the ice cream truck either. For one thing sometimes the driver is a little creepy, but mostly because it seems rediculous to spend so much on one frozen goodie!!

Cookie baker Lynn said...

Tartelette- Thanks! You are so sweet to say so.

Sarah - When your kids whine about you being cheap, you can blame me. :-)

Sean - Especially with your store discount.

Melinda - Rampant Cat Retirement House?? Can you choose his and hers retirement homes and visit each other?

Gigi- Deal!

Cate - make your son homemade ice cream and you'll be set for your golden years!

Peabody - They are yummy!

Amy - so true, so true

Rose & Thorn - I have two, sometimes working at the same time. You need at least one! Just put it down as a non-negotiable budget item. :-)

Valli- Euww, yes, I can see why that song would grate on your nerves.

Blue Zebra - Excellent plan!

Anne - what? You're a horrible mother, too? I can't believe that. How could you resist with such darling boys?

VeggieGirl - Thanks so much for the kind words!

Aimee - Aww, you're so sweet. Do you need adopting? Mommies definitely need mothering.

Dee Light -Ha, ha, I hear you on the creepy driver thing!

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

That gives new meaning to ice cream money!
Those are really so yummy looking and I've never been one to need heat to crave ice cream! I think I need a cruel and heartless mom like you in my camp.

Kelly-Jane said...

I'm sure they'll come visit -especially if you'll make these for them :) We don't have anything like that here, but boy so they sounds great!

Ellie said...

Forget the nursing home - those look so good, I'd tell you that you had to stay under the same roof as me for the rest of your days! Glad to see that your ice cream cones of choice are the waffle ones, those other ones are so horrid and taste like styrofoam! Not that I know what styrofoam tastes like...but you know what I mean! :D

Belinda said...

Yes, I'm with Ellie...they may hold you captive and force to to make homemade ice cream for the remainder of your days! You make such lovely treats, I've no doubt your kids feel like the luckiest kids in the world. :-)

Emily said...

Sean is right, you can buy a whole box of ice cream for $3.00 ( while one ice cream from " Ice Cream Joe " is the same price )

They look super good,........( I wish mom would make some.........)

The girl on the other side of the state said...

Wow! You are so popular. I bet all these comments make your day mom. Well done.

eatme_delicious said...

Yum drumsticks! I've never even thought about making them at home before.

I would love your snickerdoodle recipe, by the way. :) My email is emdrecipes @ Oh and did you see that I made your banana bran muffins? They're so very delicious and my new favourite healthy muffin recipe, with some modifications. Thanks for directing me to them!

WokandSpoon said...

Why would your kids want to buy ice-cream from the ice-cream man when yours are so much better!! You'd put the ice-cream man out of business!! Those drumsticks look amazing!

IamLoW said...

My husband was an ice cream guy, he drove his little truck by my house every day when I was 17, trying to catch some sun. :)

I think all kids should get the experience of buying off the truck ONCE. They most certainly will enjoy experiencing it, and they will now then know it's no big deal and mom's is better.