Ahh, the perfect treat for a summer evening - a root beer freeze. At the Diner we serve it with A & W Root Beer and vanilla bean ice cream, and a special little something else.
When I was a kid (probably a tween, although we were not called that at the time) I remember one summer evening with my Dad and Anna and what became the ultimate root beer float memory.
It was a warm evening, probably in August, dinner was over and the dishes were done. We all wanted something cool and delicious for dessert, and the conscientious was root beer freezes. Daddy got the blender out, Anna got the ice cream and root beer out, we selected our glasses (mine had Mickey Mouse on it) and the anticipation had begun!
Daddy poured a little root beer into the bottom of the blender, scooped in the ice cream, poured in more root beer and put the lid on the blender. He turned the blender on low to get things going; grabbed a spoon from the counter; slowly took the lid off the blender, making sure he hadn’t judged wrong and everything would come flying out; and started putting the spoon in the blender trying to get scoops of ice cream down further toward the blade so the freezes would be smooth and creamy. All of a sudden, we all knew he had gone too far! The spoon came in contact with the blade!
We all yelled at once out of “start,” as he quickly removed the spoon and turned off the blender. As he drew the spoon out of the creamy liquid, and finally completely out of the blender, we all gasped at what we saw – the WOODEN spoon had been chewed up by the blade! Then the reality of the consequence of the choice of the wooden spoon set in – there were bits of wood in our highly anticipated, delightfully cool root beer freezes!
There was not enough ice cream to start over, so we agreed to take our chances and share this new high-in-fiber version of our favorite summer treat. The freezes were poured into our pre-selected glasses, we all got straws and long-handled spoons and sat at the kitchen table to (hopefully) enjoy Daddy’s new creation.
We all slurped with care, straining the small pieces of wood as we went along. The one thing these fibrous treats forced us to do was to SLOWLY savor our summer treat! A summer memory I will never forget!
These days, at Holly’s Diner, we use a metal spoon if we need one at all to coax the scoops of ice cream along. And when the freeze is blended, there is substitute ingredient to Daddy’s “signature” ingredient – at the Diner we use chocolate, a bit more palatable than wood bits! Once we blend the root beer and ice cream, we take the glass and squirt chocolate syrup in the glass from bottom to just below the lip, lengthwise, rotating the glass as we go to get chocolate all around, then pour in the root beer freeze.
Even with chocolate substituted for bits of a wooden spoon, the wonder memory from summer ago taught me something that has stuck with me to this day – enjoy the freeze slowly to savor all it’s worth!
What’s your favorite summer treat?