Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Snow Cream

Snow Cream
Dorcas Annette Walker

This past week when we got six to eight inches of snow here on the mountain we once again became snowbound on our dead-end road. It took my husband five tries before he finally was able to make it over our steep hill yesterday. Since we are one of the last side roads for the snowplow to reach- and that just in later years- we always keep a bucket of ashes handy to help give traction in order to make it out to the main road.

The recent snow bought back memories of my first introduction to winters in the Tennessean Mountains when we pastored a rural church in Morgan County where the closest neighbors lived a mile away. I was expecting my son and in my sixth month began having labor pains. Each week we traveled down to Oak Ridge where the doctor would shake his head and tell me to try and hold out a little longer. I didn’t become too worried until winter set in. Although we lived on the main road the snow plow went by once a day and after that we were on our own. We discovered the year before the army had to send up a tank in order to get a lady down to the hospital. Dana was intrigued with the thought of using a trip with me in an army tank as an advertisement for our church. I flatly refused to consider being hauled off the mountain in an army tank. I told my husband that he would have to find some other promotional idea. Each time a big snow hit, my husband would hover close by asking me how I felt. My son didn’t make his appearance until early spring right on his due date.

Once again I couldn’t resist the newly fallen snow and made up a batch of Snow Cream or what some might call “poor man’s ice cream”, although to begin with only the very wealthy enjoyed ice cream made from snow. The Emperors of China were the first known people to eat ice cream that their cooks made by mixing snow and ice with fruit, wine, and honey as a tasty treat. In 62 A.D. Roman Emperor Nero wanted snow ice cream so badly he sent slaves up into the mountains on a special trip to bring back snow and ice so his cooks could make some for him. In 1295 Marco Polo returned from China with a recipe for snow ice cream that used yak milk. Soon the rich people of Italy were enjoying frozen milk that eventually evolved into the ice cream we enjoy today.

My Snow Cream can be made using a variety of flavors or eaten with different toppings. Snow Cream tastes like homemade ice cream with its soft creamy texture and should be eaten slowly. Once frozen though Snow Cream becomes solid and hard. Preparation time for my homemade Snow Cream is ten minutes and this recipe makes one gallon.

Peach Snow Cream

1½ gallons of fresh clean snow
1 c sugar
4 tb vanilla extract
2 c frozen peach jam (thawed)
2 (12 oz) cans of evaporated milk

In a large bowl mix together the snow, sugar, extract, and jam. Drizzle the evaporated milk over the snow and stir until well blended. Immediately serve and freeze leftovers!

Weekly tip: Use only wooden or plastic utensils to make snow ice cream as the snow will stick to metal making it difficult to mix!

Dorcas Annette Walker is a published author, columnist, speaker, freelance magazine writer, and photographer from Jamestown, Tennessee. Contact her at: For more recipes check out her Creative Tennessee Mountain Cookin blog at:

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