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by on July 14th, 2011

Black Walnut Ice Cream

Are you screamin’ for ice cream this summer?


I don’t know what your first memories of ice cream are but mine are of a Walkaway Sunday at Figgins ice cream shop in my hometown. The little neighborhood shop is long gone but what I remember is my grandmother taking my sister and I there. We lived within walking distances and it was a real treat to be able to go.

I don’t know where the name walkway came from because we didn’t walkway away eating it. Believe it or not it wasn’t any more than a large sundae glass filled with rich vanilla ice cream and chocolate syrup. I’m sure it was Hershey’s syrup because sometimes when I get the right combination of the right brand of vanilla ice cream and the “canned” Hershey’s syrup, I can close my eyes and see those two little twin girls sitting on a bar stool eating their ice cream. I have had similar experiences with smells and taste that take me back to a different time. Mysterious!

Then, of course, who doesn’t have all those memories of  parents or grandparents churning ice cream. Remember how we use to have to layer the salt with the ice in the big wooden ice cream makers and we would sit there and take turns churning the mixture until you just could not turn one more time. Seems like it was always the adults doing the churning and the kids were all running around saying “is it ready yet”.

I don’t think I miss all that churning one bit. Then along came the electric ice cream maker and all you had to do was listen for the motor to stop and then you were ready to dig in, but you still had to put the ice and salt in this freezer and now I’m even lazier because I have the ice cream maker where you just put the barrel in the freezer and you are ready to make ice cream at a drop of a hat.

I use to be so boring when it came to ordering in an ice cream parlor. If they didn’t have black walnut, I always got vanilla and probably still would. I have gotten a lot more adventurous with my flavors since I have started making my own. Try some of my favorites — Bananas Foster, Chocolate Malt, or Raspberry Nutella, and especially the Watermelon Sorbet. I love all the ice creams I have posted here and it’s hard for me to pick out a favorite. All I know is that on a hot summer day here in Texas, nothing taste better than a scoop — or two — of something cold and frozen.

I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream!

Scrap the seeds from 1/2 of a vanilla bean pod.

My favorite tool at work.


Black Walnut Ice Cream

1/2 c. sugar
2 c. whole milk
1 cup half-and-half cream (or whipping cream)
1 tsp. black walnut extract
1/2 vanilla bean, scraped, optional or 1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 c. chopped black walnuts, plus more for garnish

In bowl, stir together the sugar, whole milk, half-and half and black walnut extract. Add the vanilla bean seeds that you scraped or add the vanilla extract. Pour into your ice cream maker and freeze according to manufacturers instruction.

When ice cream is firm, fold in the walnuts and transfer to container that you can freeze in. Freeze until solid. Garnish with chopped black walnuts.

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1 comment to Black Walnut Ice Cream

  • Gena

    Sound great! Do you remember when we lived in Overland Park and Sears had a talking ice cream maker that went into the freezer? It had a voice box that said, “Your ice cream is ready” The kids would all sit around the kitchen waiting for it to talk.

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