|Strawberry Ice Cream Memories|
May 18, 2017
Roasted some brussel sprouts and a head of cauliflower this morning. Wanted to do it before the day got too hot.
Also made a batch of homemade strawberry ice cream. Couldn't resist licking the dasher, and boyohboy was that ice cream GOOD (if I do say so myself!) I don't care so much what I have for dinner tonight, so long as I have ice cream for dessert!!
I love almost any kind of ice cream (vanilla probably is my least favorite in general). Strawberry, though, brings back special memories. It reminds me of my maternal grandma, cause she always liked it. She used to buy Neapolitan ice cream (vanilla-chocolate-strawberry), because, she said, "That way everyone gets something they like". Which might work in theory, but never worked so well in practice......the vanilla was always left in the carton, getting freezer burn, cause no one ate it.
My other memories of ice cream have to do with my college days.
I went to school SUNY Oswego, located right on the shore of Lake Ontario (my junior year dorm room looked over the lake). Being right on the southern shore of the lake meant that winters there were long, cold, and prodigiously snowy (Johnny Carson even mentioned the town on The Tonight Show, after one particularly snowy week).
We were young and hardy, though, and made it through the winters. And when Spring finally arrived, there were certain telltale signs. There was, of course, the ubiquitous mud. And the equally ubiquitous Frisbee games, held on any swath of green available (and often in the mud).
Another sure fire sign of Spring was the seasonal reopening of what were referred to as "The Stands". There was Jack's, and there was Rudy's. There was also an ice cream stand, whose name I've forgotten. The Stands were located just a short walk off campus, right on the shore. Across the street was a trailer park, and cottages for summer rentals.
The Stands were about as 'rustic' as you could get. You ordered at the counter, and took your food outside and ate at picnic tables by the water, and watched the most magnificent sunsets. The food was nothing elaborate. They may have served hamburgers and hot dogs, but what they were known for was fried fish and french fries. Served with tartar sauce, as either a platter or a sandwich. It was greasy, hot, messy, and divine!
Sitting out by the lake, the sound of the water lapping on the rocks, the gulls screeching overhead, the sun setting in a blaze of pinks, golds, and purples......it was really Heaven.
After the fish and fries, we'd wander over to the ice cream stand and have soft serve cones, and eat them as we meandered back to campus.
But my personal "Rite of Spring" was to walk into town on the first really warm day and go to Stone's Homemade Candy Shop. Their candy was phenomenal, and I often bought some to take back to campus with me, but on those Spring days, it was the homemade ice cream I went for. I loved the pistachio (they used whole, real pistachios, not chopped almonds masquerading as pistachios). But invariably, that first Spring ice cream (always in a cone, never in a dish) HAD to be their homemade strawberry. It was sheer bliss.
This morning, as I licked the ice cream off the dasher, I closed my eyes, and just for a moment.......this is what I saw in my mind's eye.......