Sunday, August 1, 2010

We All Scream for Ice Cream (In a Can:)

It's always fun to make ice cream - especially when the kids do all the work! This is a great activity to do at home and in the classroom (the hardest part is getting all the cans). You basically place all the ingredients in a plastic zippered bag, place the bag in a can and then let the kids roll the can around. Now, there are tons of recipes out there and you can make this same recipe using only plastic bags. However, the bags can break and the kiddos get a little, let's say hyper, shaking the bag around. Therefore, I prefer to make it in a can. This way the children can sit and roll the can from side to side, back and forth between their hands. I think this is the least chaotic way to do it. Coffee cans aren't in big supply around here thanks to my Starbuck's addiction. Instead we have lots and lots of formula cans, and since my baby requires the super expensive kind (don't you just love GERD) I just saved and used those (because for as much as this crud costs I'm squeezing every last ounce of use out of the packaging). We did this activity in my daughter's 2nd grade class at the end of year party. Each child had their own can. I then just went around the room squirted chocolate or caramel and whipped cream into their bags and let the kids eat the ice cream right out of the bag.

Can Ice Cream
12-15oz Can with a lid -I used Enfamil Nutramigen 12.6 oz - you can use coffee can, shortening can, anything with a resealable lid. You can use a bigger can and put two bags in it instead of one -but you will have to add more ice.
Quart size Ziploc bags (you need the kind with "zippers")
Ice - I use Sonic ice. Sonic sells bagged crushed ice - just go through the drive through and order you a bag or two. It doesn't have to be Sonic ice but it is easier if it is crushed ice so you can "pack" the can. Plus it's easier to scoop out and place in the can when you are doing 20 of them:)
Rock Salt (One box of the Morton Ice Cream Salt will last you FOREVER)
1/2 cup Half & Half
1 Tbsp Granulated Sugar
1/2 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract

Now when I did this in class I had the desks moved together and put a plastic tablecloth over all the desks. I then had each child put their cans and their bags in front of them and myself and parent volunteers each had an ingredient and we went down the line and placed our ingredient in the bags. We did the same thing with the ice and the salt and it worked well. It was efficient and organized and QUIET. So to get started place the ziplog bag in the can so that the bag stays upright.

Put the ingredients (half & half, sugar & vanilla) into the bag.

Seal the bag squeezing out all the air. Take the bag out of the can.

Fill the can 1/3 of the way full with ice and sprinkle 3 tablespoons rock salt over the ice. Place the sealed bag of ice cream ingredients into the can.

Cover the bag with ice and another 3 tablespoons of rock salt. Add enough ice until the can is packed full (but you can still seal the lid on).

Place the lid on the can and turn the can on it's side. Hold your elbows to your sides - this is the farthest distance the can should roll - this also allows the children to keep the rolling on their desks!

Roll back and forth for 5 minutes (you may want to stop after 2 minutes and pack with more ice (as the ice will melt quickly). It's important to say (especially to the kids) that the can needs to continue to roll the whole 5 minutes - don't stop. The faster it turns the faster the ice cream will freeze.

After 5 minutes take the bag out of the can and it should be frozen. If it's not frozen, place the bag back in the can, add more ice and roll for another 2 minutes. Ohh, see the frost on the lid. There's goodness in there!

See it's frozen! well you can't really see, but trust me it's frozen.

And if you do a really good job Amy Butler will come over. OK, maybe not the real Amy Butler but her fabric might just make it's way into the photo. Isn't it fun?
So as I was saying it's frozen, now you can see the frozen pieces in the bag. And you can just squirt inn your favorite topping.
And then enjoy with a spoon right out of the bag! It's really is that easy. Now, as you can see this stuff melts super fast, but I have found the kids don't seem to notice because #1 they eat it so fast and #2 they like to mix their toppings in like soup anyway.

*Note - you can increase the quantities it just will take longer to freeze and you may need to use a bigger container so you will need more ice. You can use a larger can and place two bags in the can (instead of one) - but again it will take a few minutes more to freeze. The children can then share a can and they roll the can back and forth between them on the floor.

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