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Tomato ice cream, cucumber ice cream & avocado ice cream (1968)

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Ice cream salad recipes: Tomato ice cream, cucumber ice cream & avocado ice cream

The tomato ice cream on the rocks [below] makes a frosty start for a hot-summer menu.

Serve it alone, in a hollowed-out tomato, or trim a scoop with lobster. Or, round out a simple meat course with this creamy-rich purée.

Although the idea of tomato ice cream seems NOW, it can claim respectable Early American roots. Similar concoctions, like greengage-plum ice cream, flourished in Colonial eating taverns of the South. Old World ancestors were probably sorbets — light, fruit-flavored water ices served at elaborate, many-coursed banquets to refresh the palate.

ice cream salad - vegetables - gross food from 1968 (1)

Words by Elizabeth Alston / Photograph by Peter Papadopoulos

If you’ve always longed for dessert first, ice-cream salads are what you’ve been waiting for. They taste like salads, but look like desserts — served in chilled stem glasses or frosted dishes.

The frozen purées reciped below convert from starter to partner to substance of a meal. They can stand alone as a separate salad or first course, can take jazzing up with cooked, chilled shrimp, lobster or crabmeat.

For a double-imaged salad, surround a scoop with an oil-and-vinegar-dressed version of the same vegetable: tomatoes, for example, and tomato ice cream.

Next, three recipes that prove vegetables come through creaming and freezing as gracefully as fruits.

Tomato ice cream salad recipe

Mix together 1/2 cup mayonnaise, store-bought or homemade, 1 can (8 ozs.) tomato sauce, 11/2 tbsps. lemon juice, 1 tbsp. sugar, 1/4 tsp. salt, little black pepper.

Whip 1/2 cup heavy cream until thick and foamy, but not stiff. Stir 1 spoonful into the tomato mixture, then mix this gently into the remaining whipped cream. Freeze until firm in ice-cube tray or in electric ice-cream maker.

Makes 2 cups. Serve in chilled stem glasses or in hollowed-out tomatoes.

Tomato may be peeled: either put into boiling water for 12 seconds, rinse immediately in cold to prevent further cooking, then peel off skin. Or impale tomato on cooking fork and slowly rotate in a gas flame until skin scorches slightly and “splits,” then peel off skin. Cut slice off stem end of tomato and scoop out seeds and pulp with a spoon. Fill immediately with ice-cream salad or leave upside down in refrigerator until ready to serve.

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Cucumber ice cream salad recipe

Peel 2-3 medium-sized cucumbers. Cut in half lengthwise, scoop out most of seeds if they are large and coarse. If not, leave them. Using a stainless steel knife, dice the cucumbers to make 4 cups.

Bring to boil 2-1/2 cups water, add diced cucumber, 3/4 tsp. salt. Simmer slowly, uncovered, 15 mins. Drain well.

Purée cooked cucumber in blender with 1/2 cup loosely-packed plucked fresh mint leaves, or 2-3 tsps. dried mint leaves.

Mix this purée with 1/2 cup mayonnaise, little black pepper; add few drops green food color if desired. Whip 1/2 cup heavy cream until thick, but not stiff. Stir 1 spoonful into the cucumber mixture, then stir this gently into the remaining whipped cream.

Pour into an 8-inch square pan or divide mixture between 2 ice-cube trays and freeze until firm. Makes 3 cups. Serve in chilled stem glasses or hollowed-out tomatoes. Garnish with cucumber slices.

Avocado ice cream salad recipe

Use a large, ripe avocado. With a stainless steel knife, cut in half; remove pit and scoop out flesh, then chop roughly to make about 1 cup.

Press through strainer or sieve with a wooden spoon to make 2/3 cup purée. Mix purée with 1/2 cup mayonnaise, 2 tbsps. lime or lemon juice, 1 tsp. salt, little black pepper.

Whip 1/2 cup heavy cream until thick, but not stiff. Stir 1 spoonful into the avocado mixture, then stir this gently into the remaining whipped cream.

Pour into an ice-cube tray and freeze until firm. Makes 2 cups. Serve in chilled stem glasses or hollowed-out tomatoes.

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