In our family, ice milk was an everyday dessert. On occasion, Neapolitan ice cream was sliced in rectangular slabs so each member of the family could get an equal serving of vanilla, chocolate and strawberry. Friendly’s Ice Cream was the stuff of family celebrations. My brother Jim’s favorite flavor was Mint Chocolate Chip. Ken’s top choice was Butter Crunch. My favorite was Peppermint Stick, usually available around Christmas. As for John, he was, and remains to this day, a diehard Carvel fan. Whenever he’s in town, we make a special trip.
But, oh, that Friendly’s Peppermint Stick Ice Cream! So festive, so sweet, so pink, and studded with bursts of peppermint candy shards! I wasn’t sure if it was still available, but then I think, “Hey, I can make this myself.” So I pull out the Krups La Glaciere and get to work.
The recipe is simple. One cup of milk is warmed on the stove. Two eggs are whisked separately with ½ cup of sugar. The hot milk is slowly added to the sugar and then the total mixture is heated until thickened. Let cool to room temperature and add two cups of cream. The final two ingredients are key – two teaspoons of peppermint extract, and a couple of drops of red food coloring to get that perfect preppy pink color.
Chill in the refrigerator overnight and then process in an ice cream maker according to directions. But don’t forget the most important addition – the real authenticity comes with those shreds of peppermint candy that pop in your mouth like little sugary blasts. I smash a handful of peppermint “starlight mints.”
The ice cream maker revs up, creating gorgeous pink waves.
As the ice cream thickens, the candies are added in the final step.