There is no real difficulty in making ices for the table; but for want of the proper means of freezing them, and of preventing their being acted on by a too warm atmosphere afterwards, in many houses it cannot very easily be accomplished unless the weather be extremely cold.
A vessel called a freezing-pot, an ice-pail, a strong wooden mallet, and a copper spatula, or an ice-spoon, are all that is positively required for this branch of confectionary. Suitable moulds for iced puddings, and imitations of fruit, must be had in addition when needed.
When the composition which is to be frozen is ready, the ice must be beaten quite small with the mallet, and either mingled quickly with two or three handsful of powdered saltpetre, or med with a much larger quantity of salt. The freezing-pot must then be firmly placed in the centre of the ice, which must be pressed closely into the vacant space around it until it reaches the top. The cover of the ice-pot, or freezer, may then he removed, and the preparation to be iced poured into it. It should then be tamed by means of the handle at the top, quickly backwards and forwards for eight or ten minutes; then the portion which will have frozen to the inside must be scraped well from it with the ice-spoon and mingled with the remainder: without this the mass would be fall of lumps instead of being perfectly smooth as it ought to be. The sum process must be continued until the whole of its contents are uniformly frozen.
The water-ices which are made in such perfection on the continent are incomparably superior to the ice-creams, and other sweet compositions which are usually served in preference to them here. One or two receipts which we append will serve as guides for many others, which may easily be compounded with any variety of fresh summer fruit.*
Red Currant Ice.— Strip from the stalks and take
Strawberry and raspberry water-ices are made in precisely the same manner.
To convert any of these into English ice-creams, merely mingle the juice and pulp of the fruit with sufficient pounded sugar to sweeten them, or with the syrup as above, and then blend with them gradually from
* The ices for desserts should be moulded in the form of fruit or other shapes adapted to the purpose; the natural flavour and colouring are then given to the former, but it is only experienced cooks or confectioners generally who understand this branch of ice-making, and it is better left to them. All the necessary moulds may be procured at any good ironmonger’s, where the manner of using them would be explained: we can give no more space to the subject.