Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Grandma Shields' Marshmallow Ice Cream

That's my Grandma Shields.  The big picture on the left is of her and my mother when my mother looks to be about 10 years old.  That would have made my grandmother about 50.  My mother was somewhat of an "oops" I assume as Grandma would have been 40 when she gave birth to her and in 1940 (sorry to reveal your age Mom!) that would have been a tad past prime child-bearing years.  My mom was the youngest of seven children and as she admits, a little spoiled by her mother.  (Not by Grandpa....he was a grumpy ole SOB.)  The bottom right picture is of Grandma at a much younger age and minus the rather wild hairdo looks EXACTLY like my mother.....right down to the expression on her face.  The picture above that is Grandma and Grandpa and that's how I remember my grandmother looking......old, and always wearing a boldly patterned dress and pearls.  Like she was on her way to church every day, despite being a tireless farm wife.  

Back row:  Kate, Grandpa, Ruth, Grandma
Middle row:  Chuck, Emma, Maxine
Front row:  Tom
(before my mom was born I assume, unless they left her in the coop for the chickens to look after)

My mom always told me that I was Grandma's favorite grandchild.....sorry to my millions of cousins out there, but I choose to believe that she's probably right!!  :)  I mean, why would that not be true??  And since Grandma was such a great cook, and I was the favorite, it only goes to reason that my love of food came from her.  Follow me? 

A couple of years ago, I hounded politely asked my mother to pass down Grandma's recipe book until I finally wore her down she gladly handed it over.

Yup.  That's it.  An old electrical co-op book that she had cut and pasted recipes in over the years.

Ohio farm wives had to be resourceful.  The ones pasted in there that are in her own handwriting are the ones I treasure.

Although some of the newspaper-clipped ones are pretty damn interesting with names like "Roman Holiday", "Mushroom Surprise" and "Gumdrop Salad".  I gotta wonder if she ever served any of those to grumpy Charlie (Grandpa) for dinner.

One of her handwritten recipes was for ice-cream that contained nothing more than marshmallows, milk, cream and "flavoring".  No eggs.  No sugar.  Which meant I didn't have to make a custard!  Boom. 

It required nothing more than melting marshmallows into some milk, adding cream and "flavoring" and freezing.  Even Jenny could do this.  (Inside BFF joke.  We'll see if she reads my blog like she says she does!)

 I decided to keep this simple on the first try and make my "flavoring" vanilla, but this is totally a blank canvas.  I infused one whole scraped, seeded vanilla bean into the warm marshmallow/milk mixture while it was cooling before I added the cream.  I halved the original recipe because I didn't have room for a gallon of ice cream in the freezer, plus my Cuisinart's capacity is just a quart.  The Cuisinart problem proved to be moot, however because this freezes just as well without a machine.  I put half of the cooled mixture into a tupperware container, popped it into the freezer and stirred it every few hours until it was solid and it's just as creamy as the half I froze in the ice cream machine.  Bigger boom.  This is not a sugar-sweaters-on-your-teeth sweet ice cream but its smooth and creamy the way really good ice cream should be.

I can't wait to try this again with other flavorings.....cinnamon, coffee, or some of that out of control mint that I fight with every summer.  Oh, and how about toasting those marshmallows before melting them then adding some chocolate chips and then topping with some crushed graham crackers??  See where I went there?  Endless possibilities.

Marshmallow Ice Cream
Celia Shields
makes 1 gallon

2 lb Marshmallows
4 cups milk
2 quarts cream
flavorings of your choice

Dissolve marshmallows into milk in a pan (I used a non-stick) over low heat.  Remove from heat and cool.  Add in cream and freeze.


  1. Why wouldn't you be her favorite because you are mine. The ice cream was great

  2. Love the blog.....and seeing the pictures. Cal doesn't remember the ice cream .... so I guess only her "favorites" got to have this special treat! He does remember her angel food cakes though! How much "flavoring" would you tell a "by the recipe" cook to put in ... I'm not good at improvising!

    Thanks for sharing!

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