History And Facts Of Ice Cream

Part 1.  The History - The Beginning & Growth.
Part 2.  The Inside View - Ingredients & Health.





Ice Cream - The History.

The history of Ice Cream dates back to the first century, so I thought there must be a bit of history involved with this stuff.... and there is.... "lots".


Ice Cream dates back to the first century A.D. The ancient chinese were reputed to enjoy the odd ice cream. Not ice cream as we know it, probably a sorbet or "snow" topped with a bit of fruit. Why not give it a try, make sure the snow is not yellow! 


Ice cream as a dairy product was probably "discovered" in the 1600s and has been sampled by some very important people. Charles I, King of England, was reputed to like the odd scoop. Later the likes of George Washington paid almost $200 for a specific recipe.

Before Nancy Johnson''s day - (we''ll talk more about Nancy a little further on) - ice cream was strictly a handmade item. Rather than the wooden (or most often today, plastic) tub to hold the ice and salt for freezing, our forefathers and foremothers used a pewter bowl. A smaller container of the same material held the concoction of milk, cream, eggs, sugar, and flavourings. The small pot was shaken up and down by one person while another held the bowl with the ice and salt. George Washington had such pots.
Nancy Johnson was an American; a New England Housewife. The process of making ice cream was improved by her invention of the ice cream freezer in 1846. With the slight improvement of adding a crank to the top of the churn, the crank ice cream freezer, much as we know it today, would be patented by William Young in 1848. Nancy had patented her own invention, but lacked the resources to make and market this special churn herself. Mrs. Johnson sold the patent for $200. By 1877 enough freezers to satisfy the high demand were being made. From 1847 to 1877, more than 70 improvements to ice cream churns were patented. The world''s first ice cream machine was credited to Nancy when she invented this famous ''hand-crank ice cream maker'' - or the ''hand-cranked churn,'' which still used ice and salt for cooling, making production simpler. 
It would be some years later, again, in 1851, that a dairy farmer by the name of Jacob Fussell would start it as an industry. The world''s first commercial ice-cream factory was opened in Baltimore, Maryland in 1851, by Jacob. An unstable demand for his milk led him to mass produce ice cream. This allowed the previously expensive concoction to be offered at prices everyone could afford. He opened ice cream parlours as far west as Texas. Many were still around well into the 20th century. He sold his business to Borden.

The development of industrial refrigeration by German engineer Carl von Linde, during the 1870s, obviated the cutting and storing of natural ice and then the continuous-process freezer was perfected in 1926, allowing commercial mass production of ice cream and the birth of the modern ice-cream industry.
The most common method for producing ice-cream at home is to use an ice-cream machine, generally an electrical device that churns the ice cream while refrigerated inside a household freezer or using ice and salt for cooling.


ITALY apparently invented the delicious practice of adding sweetener and flavouring to cream and freezing it, and England heard of this iced cream before the American colonies did. The Americans can claim to have invented the modern name for it--dropping the d to make ice cream. In Philadelphia as long ago as 1744 there was mention of "some fine Ice Cream" served with strawberries and milk. For centuries after that, Philadelphia ice cream was the name for ice cream of a distinctive type, made without eggs. Philadelphia was also the birthplace of the ice cream soda. That first combination of America''s favourite treat, together with America''s favourite beverage, took place in 1874 at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia.

Welcome to one of Nancy Johnson''s "modern" Ice Cream Freezers:

The History Of The Ice Cream Wafer & Cone Industry In The United Kingdom:

Who invented this? ....


Documented records show that a rolled cone was being produced in Europe for many years - before the idea was brought to Manchester, England, in the latter part of the 19th Century by Valvona.
Antonio Valvona was the 1st person in the UK to make "cones." He started making rolled sugar cones in 1896. He was originally an ice cream trader, in Manchester, & it has been said in articles written about him that he saw cones in Belgium & brought the idea back to England in 1896. In England, there was a census every 10 years &, in the 1901 census, Valvona was listed as a biscuit maker.... with six baker''s assistants.

In 1904, the first large cone was sold in London. These biscuit cones were soon made in a number of cities & towns. In London, Gus Pampa & Luigi Marcantonio of Lambeth started a small factory, producing cones.

Antonelli Bros Ltd. have been manufacturing cones & wafers since 1912, in England, under The International Wafer Co (D Antonelli) which became The International Biscuit Co. Ltd.  

....And to the present day, Antonelli Bros Ltd., based in Eccles, Manchester, are specialist premium end cone & wafer manufacturers.

L Lewis, of Chester, wish to thank Mr. Roland Antonelli - of Antonelli Bros Ltd. - for providing all the research on cone manufacture in the UK from his research of documented archives.
- We wish him a pleasant day & many ice creams!







Ice Cream - The Inside View.


0-16% milk fat
9-12% milk solids-not-fat: this component, also known as the serum solids, contains the proteins (caseins and whey proteins) and carbohydrates (lactose) found in milk
12-16% sweeteners: usually a combination of sucrose and/or glucose-based corn syrup sweeteners
0.2-0.5% stabilizers and emulsifiers e.g., agar or carrageenan extracted from seaweed
5%-64% water which comes from milk solids or other ingredients....

''A sweet frozen dessert, made from milk fat and solids, sugar, flavouring, a stabilizer (usually gelatin), and sometimes eggs, fruits, or nuts. These ingredients make up the ice cream, a portion of the final volume, the remainder being air incorporated during the whipping process. The mix is churned at freezing temperature to attain a light, smooth texture.''

Water ices existed in the Roman Empire, and Marco Polo brought back from East Asia reports of iced, flavoured foods.
- - - -
From Italy, the confection spread to France and England, then reaching America early in the 18th cent. The making of ice cream was originally a much longer working process. The temperature was reduced by placing the ice cream mixture into a container that was immersed in a mixture of crushed ice and salt. The dissolving of salt in water is endothermic and the salt allows liquid water to be below the freezing point of pure water, allowing the immersed container with cream to make better contact with the melted water/ice mixture.
Ice cream sundaes had become popular by the 1890s, and the ice cream cone was introduced in 1904. The manufacture of ice cream in the United States on a commercial scale began in 1851, in Baltimore, and has become an important industry. Commercial ice cream is pasteurized and homogenized. Federal, state, local, and industry regulations as to percentage of milk fats and solids, purity of ingredients, and cleanliness of preparation and dispensing are designed to maintain the dietary value of ice cream and to inhibit bacterial multiplication, for which ice cream is a favourable medium.


The Nutritional Value for Ice Cream:

Description Quantity Energy
Saturated Fat
vanilla, regular 11% 1 cup 270 32 5 59 133 14 8.9
vanilla, regular 11% 1/2 gallon 2155 254 38 476 1064 115 71.3
vanilla, regular 11% 3 fl oz 100 12 2 22 50 5 3.4
vanilla, rich 16% fat 1 cup 350 32 4 88 148 24 14.7
vanilla, rich 16% fat 1/2 gallon 2805 256 33 703 1188 190 118.3
vanilla, soft serve 1 cup 375 38 7 153 173 23 13.5



Did you know? - Fantastic Frozen Facts.

Ice Cream Sundaes were created when it became illegal to sell ice cream with flavoured soda, on a Sunday, in the American town of Evanston during the late 19th century. Some traders got round it by serving it with syrup instead, calling it an ''Ice Cream Sunday'' & eventually replacing the final ''y'' with an ''e'' to avoid upsetting religious leaders. Britain has the third highest consumption at around 8 litres per person per year. Consumption has little connection with sunshine as we fall behind the Danes & the Swedes. None of us match the Americans though, who get through a staggering 21 litres per person each year.

While many people are only aware of a handful of ice cream companies, there are over 1,000 in the U.K. producing hundreds of flavours. Despite this fact, vanilla remains the favourite - being chosen nine times out of ten.

The first real evidence of the existence of a form of ''ice cream'' originates from China''s Tang period (A.D.618-97). King Tang of Shang had, among his staff, 94 ice men who helped to make a dish based on buffalo milk, flour & camphor.

Hokey Pokey is a traditional name for ice cream & originated from the early ice cream vendors. They peddled their wares with shouting "Ecco un poco" - ''here is a little.''

The people of Scotland & Northern Ireland eat more ice cream, on average, than those in England & Wales.

Surveys have shown that men are more likely to choose an ice cream dessert than women.

- From an article by The Ice Cream Alliance Ltd, with thanks.



Mid 20th Century Wafer Maker

Marvellous equipment in its day!
Shine on, our dear Ice Cream People :-)

....And so we have it. We hope you enjoyed this little tour.