Wednesday, January 28, 2015

I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream For...Snow Cream!

"Snow Mist," original photo by the author, 
copyright,  Kathryn Louise Wood
(*Author's note: I prepared this post several days before the Northeast got blasted with the blizzard. We even got a little dusting here in Edenton; more like powdered sugar than snow. See my photo at the bottom of the post of our little winged porch pig. The photo to the left at the top, is one I took along the Blue Ridge Parkway of Virginia, several years ago.)

I think one of the most depressing weather conditions is a 38 degree rainfall. It just makes you cold to the bone and isn't even pretty. I realize I am speaking as an eastern North Carolinian, far away from the lands of winter-long frozen tundra, but I do wish we could have at least one lovely snowfall this winter. Just one. Maybe two, but any more would just be over zealous and take some of the magic away. Growing up in eastern North Carolina and Virginia, a snow day was always an exciting event and we celebrated by making Snow Cream. I used to think Snow Cream was a confection limited to the South but my research has found its consumption all over the country.

Looking for the oldest written recipe I could find for the fluffy fabulousness, I found the following from Elizabeth Ellicott Lea of Ellicott City, Maryland. Her cookbook, Domestic Cookery, Useful Receipts, and Hints to Young Housekeepers was published in Baltimore in 1841 with later editions in 1846 and 1851. You can see the original text and all her other recipes at:

-Snow Cream (19th century style)-
“Take the richest cream you can procure, season it with a few drops of essence of lemon or syrup of lemon peel, and powdered white sugar, and if you choose a spoonful of preserve syrup, and just as you send it to table, sitr in light newly fallen snow till it is nearly stiff as ice cream.”

"Snow Cream!!!!!!" by Chris Breeze, via Wikimedia Commons
I grew up with Snow Cream made with fresh, raw eggs whipped into the mixture but concerns about salmonella poisoning from consuming uncooked eggs has put a damper on that childhood memory. is a modern (egg-free) recipe which is still delicious and appropriately celebratory. (As with ice cream flavors, variations are endless.)

-Snow Cream-
1 gallon of clean, fresh, fluffy snow (if you can, set out a bowl to catch it as it falls)
1 cup sugar (powdered makes for less graininess but some of us enjoy granulated's crunchiness)
1 tablespoon vanilla
2 cups milk (or cream or half&half or canned evaporated milk, etc)
Stir sugar and vanilla into snow to taste, then stir in enough milk for desired consistency.
Serve immediately! Quick, before it melts!

"When Pigs Fly" Edenton Snowfall Photo by the author, Kathryn Wood

Have a good couple weeks, dear Reader. Thanks for stopping by...y'all come back now!


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