Ice Cream Quiet
Wanted: a moment of peace away from the madness. A sensory distraction. What types of food are particularly comforting?
I scream. You scream. We all scream. For friends, jobs, and freedoms lost to a vicious virus. For George Floyd and a long list of Americans hunted down for being black.
Through all the stress, it’s important to take a breath, to find some small moments of comfort. In April 2020, Cornell University’s Sensory Evaluation Centre surveyed their panel members about their favourite comfort foods for the moment. Tops on the list? Ice cream and cookies.
Quarantine Comfort Foods
1. Ice cream
3. Mac + Cheese
If you’re looking to extract your ice cream comfort quickly, thank African American Alfred L. Cralle for inventing the ice-cream scooper, aka the Ice Cream Mold and Disher.
Cralle, who was born 1866 in Kenbridge, Virginia, worked as a hotel porter in Pittsburgh and was used to seeing kitchen workers and servers fighting to get ice cream out of the tub.
In Patent #576, 395 Cralle details how ‘this invention relates to certain new and useful improvements in ice-cream molds and dishers, and has for its object to construct a disher that may be conveniently operated with one hand.’
‘Having fully described my invention,’ Cralle continues, ‘what I claim as new, and desire to secure by Letters Patent, is
1. In an ice-cream mold and disher, the combination of the mold, arack thereom’and a handle, said handle formed in two portions pivotally secured together, cutters secured to an arm upon one portion of the handle, and a segmental rack upon the other portion of said handle engaging the rack on said mold, as and for the purpose described.
2. In an ice-cream mold and disher, the combination of the mold, a rack thereon, and a handle, said handle formed in two portions pivotally secured together, cutters secured to an arm upon one portion of the handle, and a segmental rack upon the other portion of the handle engaging the rack on the mold and a spring secured between the portions of the handle as and for the purpose described.’
Photo 2: Michelle Henderson