A much-loved dessert, ice cream has been relished by people since time immemorial. The origin and history of ice cream dates back to the ancient civilizations of Rome and Greece. (around 5th century BC). Greeks used to sell snow cones, mixed with honey and fruits, in the markets of Athens. The most fitting example to be cited is that of Roman Emperor Nero, who used to get ice from the mountains and combine it with fruit toppings. The Chinese are also credited to have devised the method to prepare sorbets and ice creams. Another incident, which occurred around the 1600s, can be cited. King Charles I of England, ordered his chef to make ice cream mandatory in the menu for the royal family. The chef is believed to have had a secret recipe and was paid handsomely to keep it a secret. However, the recipe soon traveled to the ears of nobles in Europe, who eventually began incorporating this icy dish in all their menus. Ice cream recipes were first published in the 18th century. The dessert was then introduced to the United States, where Thomas Jefferson is said to have invented the recipe for Vanilla ice cream. Read on for more.
Interesting Information On Background Of Ice Cream
- It is believed that ice creams were invented during 5th century BC. Once, in ancient Rome, Emperor Nero ordered his servants to serve snow cones with fruit toppings and fresh honey.
- During the 13th century, Marco Polo on one of his voyages came across the Chinese recipe of ice and milk concoctions, which he carried with him to Europe.
- It is believed that George Washington paid almost $200 for a specific ice cream recipe, and the First Lady, Dolly Madison served ice cream at the inaugural ball. Nonetheless, ice cream was restricted in amount and popularity, as the preparation procedure was too tedious.
- In America ice cream was advertised for the first time in in the New York Gazette on May 12, 1777. A confectioner Philip Lenzi advertised that ice cream was available ‘almost every day’.
- In 1832, an African American confectioner called Augustus Jackson was the one who created numerous ice cream recipes. He also came up with an innovative technique of manufacturing ice cream.
- In 1847, Nancy Johnson devised the first hand-crank ice cream maker and even obtained a patent for it.
- A company from Baltimore started producing and marketing wholesale ice cream in 1851, for the first time.
- Nevertheless, ice cream making was not considered an industry till the time Jacob Fussell started the manufacture of ice cream. He utilized a larger version of the Johnson’s machine in the process and indulged in mass production. By the time of the Civil War, he had already set up ice cream factories in New York, Boston and Washington.
- However, in the wake of criticism from religious quarters for eating "sinfully" rich ice cream sodas on Sundays in the 1890’s, ice cream merchants stopped using carbonated water and came up with a healthier and richer alternative/ice cream called "Sunday". Later, the name was changed to "Sundae" to avoid being associated to the Sabbath.
- Even so, the push in the production of ice cream and its popularity was evident only in the 20th century, with the invention of refrigeration and power. With this, ice cream cones and sundaes also became popular. It was also during this time that ice creams were claimed to have been invented in 1904, at St. Louis World’s Fair.
- Ice cream became a very popular dessert with the soldiers during the World War II and grew to become one of the important morale symbols. In 1945, in the Western Pacific, the first "floating ice cream parlor" was introduced. Post-World War II, rationing was lifted off dairy products. During the celebrations of the post-war success, the consumption of ice cream increased exponentially and it was estimated that over 20 quarts of ice cream was consumed per person in 1946.
- The soft version of ice creams was introduced for the first time in the 20th century. One of the Britain chemical research teams in Britain of which Margaret Thatcher was also a member, came up with a technique of doubling the content of air in ice cream. After the invention of the technique, the manufacturers were able to reduce the number of ingredients which led to the reduction of cost and made the ice creams a lot creamier and softer.
- During the 1980’s, the thicker ice creams were sold as "premium" and "super-premium" varieties. The brands which sold these ice creams were Ben & Jerry's, Chocolate Shoppe Ice Cream Company and Häagen-Dazs.
Ice cream, one of the most delicious and popular desserts, has a varied and fascinating history. Read the article above and come across all the historical aspects associated with ice creams.