July 23rd Vanilla Ice Cream Day

It has to be summer, every other day seems to celebrate ice cream in one way or another! Today, it is the simplest form of ice cream, vanilla. It is probably the first flavoring added to ice cream, although it could have been chocolate as well. The thing is, it’s the flavor that goes with anything or on top of anything. Cake, pie, fruit… well just about anything you can think of goes with vanilla ice cream. It can even serve as coffee creamer if need be. It comes from the the vanilla bean which is actually used to flavor many different things. There is something refreshing about vanilla ice cream and what better to get us through the “dog days'” of summer.

How to celebrate – Have a bowl of vanilla ice cream. Make a root beer float! Enjoy your summer.

July 19 National Ice Cream Day

The 3rd Sunday in July, National Ice Cream Day since Ronald Reagan proclaimed it so in 1984. He also proclaimed July National Ice Cream month. So, in short, I think we can conclude that Reagan liked ice cream! But then… who doesn’t! It is comfort food that kids and adults enjoy alike. Ice Cream has been around since 200 BC, naturally in China. The only thing amazing to me is that it took so long to create a National Ice Cream Day! No it’s not particularly healthy and there are some people who are allergic to it, but for those of us who aren’t today is the day to indulge in a little delight and it is so appropriate it comes in the dead of summer.

How to celebrate – Have some ice cream. Throw and ice cream party! See how many flavors of ice cream you can list.

July 1st Creative Ice Cream Flavors Day

July 1st Creative Ice Cream Flavor Day

There was a time, oh so long ago, when we had to suffer through life with only the 28 flavors of ice cream that Howard Johnson’s served up. They had more than 28 flavors even then but they only had  room for 28 flavors in their concession stand. Of course you still had to wait for an hour while someone figured out what flavor they wanted but it was no where as long as you have to wait today. And the flavors weren’t nearly as tempting then as they are today with flavors like barley, road kill and moon dust. Who knows how many flavors there actually are? I’m not sure that a cheeseburger flavored ice cream still qualifies as a dessert? It’s all so confusing…

How to celebrate – Invent your own flavor of ice cream. See how many flavors of ice cream you can name. Just have a bowl of ice cream and don’t worry about it.

July 23rd National Vanilla Ice Cream Day

Yes, it may be consider the Plain Jane of the ice cream of family but it deserves so much more credit. I mean, doesn’t nearly all ice cream start out as vanilla ice cream before the flavoring are added in?

images (1)

And, most people find vanilla ice cream the most refreshing… even if they like another flavor better. And if not for vanilla ice cream, the vanilla bean wouldn’t be nearly as useful! It is probably the first ice cream ever made, though some would argue lemon is the first. Even if that is the case, vanilla quickly over took lemon in becoming a favorite.

icecreaminfo01191823l_191825_o

It makes the perfect partner for cake and pie, for pouring syrups over or adding fruit to. It begins most milk shakes, even the chocolate ones. It can be put in coffee, punch or just served plain. And when other ice cream gets too sweet… vanilla still comes through.

Sonic-Vanilla-Cone-600x400

Then there is soft serve vanilla ice cream. It’s wonderful! And even if you like a little chocolate, you can make it a vanilla/chocolate swirl! And when you go to a fast food place the always ask if you want a vanilla, chocolate or strawberry shake. See, vanilla comes first!

images (2)

So this summer, as the days heat up and a bowl of ice cream sounds like a great way to cool down, think vanilla first. After-all you can always add chocolate or strawberry, or any flavor you want to it and only make the original, that much better!

How to celebrate – Enjoy a bowl of vanilla ice cream. See how many recipes you can use vanilla ice cream in. Study the history of ice cream.

July 15th National Ice Cream Day

So what’s your favorite flavor of ice cream? Do you like simple flavors like strawberry, chocolate or vanilla? Or do you like the more complicated flavors like Chocolate Double Fudge Vanilla Bean Brocoli Stem Grasshopper best? Well, whatever your favorite is, today is the day to enjoy it.

download (4)

It was like a hundred years ago that Baskin Robins came out with 31 flavors. Today there are probably more like 31,000 flavors! It is believed that Italo Marchiony came up with the first ice cream cone in 1896 somewhere in New York. It was lemon flavored. But this cannot be documented. Charles E. Minches did, however, serve an ice cream cone at the 1904 World’s Fair in St.. Louis. But it was not until President Ronald Reagan proclaimed the day the third Sunday in July in 1984 for it to become official.

images (5)

Does any of that really matter though? We are talking ice cream here, one of the worlds most favorite treats, particularly during the summer.And today we are even making ice cream without cream in it for the lactose intolerant!

1024x1024

Well fancy or plain, ice cream is always a treat enjoyed by nearly everyone. It tastes great, cools you down and relaxes you… at least until the sugar rush kicks in!

How to celebrate – Have a bowl or cone of ice cream. Invent your own new flavor of ice cream. Have an ice cream tasting party and try some new flavors.

August 25th National Banana Split Day

Continuing on with eating our way through the summer, the next day up is “Banana Split Day”. It all started back in 1904 when an apprentice pharmacist created the first banana split at Tassel’s pharmacy in Latrobe, Pa. He cut a banana in two halves and placed them in a long bowl, filling the center of the bowl in with vanilla, strawberry, and chocolate ice cream. He covered the strawberry ice cream with a pineapple topping, the vanilla with chocolate flavoring, and the chocolate with strawberry topping. All of that was covered in whipped cream, to which crushed nuts and maraschino cherries, wete added. It cost a dime.

newbananasplit_967_detail

Today we make a number of variations including those that add fresh fruit to the recipe and maybe use different flavors of ice cream. Of course back in 1904 there weren’t that many varieties of ice cream to choose from. In fact, you can use any flavor of ice cream you choose, any fruit that’s in season (which is practically all of them since it is summer), and you can use heavy, regular, or light whip cream. And nuts have become optional since so many are now allergic to them.

banana-split-su-653513-x

You don’t even have to use the bowl any more. You can put all the fixings in a ice cream cone and carry it with you where ever you go.

Banana-Split-Layer-Cake2

You can also make it into a cake, using the same ingredients, or those of your choice, and turn it into a party. You can still use ice cream if you like, or a flavored batter, that will taste like the Split, but is lactose free.

banana-split-dessert-43-600-600x400

Or you can make the best of both worlds and turn your banana split into a pie and meet the ice cream half way!

Anyway you choose to have a banana split is totally acceptable, so long as you accept the calories that go along with it.

This year, 2016, the US Post Office came up with a stamp celebrating the banana split. It sells for 47 cents. More than the original Split, but less than any single item in the split would cost you by itself.

How to celebrate – Have a banana split. Make your own banana split cake or pie. Make up your own banana split recipe -as long as you include the banana, anything goes!