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7 Little Known Facts about Ice Cream

June 22, 2010

Celebrate any day with ice cream! Photo credit: Flickr.com

June is National Dairy Month, and what better way to celebrate than with ice cream!!  So we’ll use this as an opportunity to throw some little-known facts about everyone’s favorite dairy treat.

1.  The origins of ice cream go way back to the 4th century B.C. when the Roman emperor Nero ordered ice to be brought from the mountains and combined it with fruit toppings.  In 1847, the first hand-crank ice cream maker was developed.

2.  Some of the most unusual flavors of ice cream ever made are avocado, garlic, azuki bean, jalapeno, and pumpkin. Perhaps the most unusual of all, hot dog flavored ice-cream made by our own Arizona Farm Bureau Member, Udder Delights.

3.   About 90% of American households eat ice cream, according to the Dairy Food Association.

4.  Ice cream has been a proven comfort food in times of angst…time and time again. A study of the U.S. ice cream industry reported in 2009 that the industry blossomed through the Great Depression after the 1929 stock market crash and became a niche household happening after World War II. The current national recession has not affected the ice cream industry with sales increasing over 20 percent from the summer of 2008.

5.  Having trouble deciphering the difference between ice cream, sorbet, yogurt and custard? Here’s how to tell: Ice cream is made from milk fat and milk solids. Sorbet is non-dairy and usually high in sugar, yogurt is usually tart with low or no fat milk substitute, and custard is rich and smooth with lots of egg in it. Here’s a frozen yogurt recipe from Arizona Farm Bureau member Shamrock Farms!

6.  Ice cream has molecules in it that can defeat the messages in the brain that tell our stomach “OK, you’ve had enough.” A study by the UT (University of Texas) Southwestern Medical Center found that foods high in fat can send fatty acids to the brain that become resistant to insulin and leptin, two hormones that involve weight regulation. A way to combat that insatiable desire for ice-cream is to know how much to eat: 3 cups of dairy each day.

7.  More Americans prefer vanilla ice cream over any other ice cream. After that comes chocolate, cookies n’ cream, strawberry and chocolate chip mint.

If you’re looking for an Arizona Farm producer of dairy products and ice-cream, including recipes that feature dairy products, head on over to our website at Fill Your Plate.org.

Information provided by Franchise Direct, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, the International Dairy Foods Association and FillyourPlate.org.

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