It’s really rather tasty.  As in “Really tasty.”  The cranberries are just barely “untart,” and they’re crunchy . . . like pecans.  But without being chewy.

The way you make this WindWalkerCamp specialty is to start off looking for frozen cherries in the grocery freezer case, picking up the bag with the red circles on it that says “unsweetened” and completely overlooking the twice-as-high lettering that says in retrospect – very clearly – “cranberries.”

This is what my family used to call “lanyap.”   Sometimes we called it “lenyoppy”.  That’s what we kids called it, anyway.  I didn’t know how to spell it till I got to UT.  Shame, really, such a wonderful word.  No self-respecting buzz-cut kid I grew up with would ever spell it with all the extra letters.  I suppose it’s better that I know how to spell it right.  But it just doesn’t ring in my ear the way my uncles or my mom said it with that “g” and the extra “p” and “e” in there like that.  “Lanyap” is pure Texan.  We figured “lenyoppy” was Spanish. “Lagniappe” is just big-city.   Like Fort Worth.   Probably foreign.

Here’s the recipe – because you are going to want to make this –
2 cups  heavy cream
1 cup  whole milk
3/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
pinch of kosher salt (I can never understand why)
1 cup of frozen cranberries – sliced into quarters  (run those puppies through the food processor)

The recipe says to chill it for a couple of hours, then put in a quarter of the liquids then a quarter of the cranberries, then another quarter and another quarter . . .  uh-uh.  No.  That’s too much like cooking.  What you do is mix everything together in a bowl.  Then whang the poo-dookie out of the cranberries and dump them into the milk and cream and sugar and vanilla.  And that ubiquitous pinch of salt.  Stir it a minute or so with a rubber spatula, and scrape it into the churn. I know what you’re thinking, but the more you scrape into the churn, the more ice cream you get back.

Now this is important: Lick The Spatula.  A real pro doesn’t try to get the whole thing into his mouth at once . . . that can be painful.  Just take your time, and do a thorough job.   When the spatula is clean enough to sneak back in the drawer  go on to the bag–of-ice-and-the-salt step.

When you’ve sealed the churn (salt water is good for taffy, bad for ice cream), and clamped the churn into the bucket by the motor or crank, and flipped the flip-lock in place to keep everything together, pour some of the ice into the bucket.  Pick up the chunks of ice from the floor and counter, rinse them under the faucet, and put them into the bucket too.  Pour about a quarter-cup of rock salt on them.  Your wife will think you are “much man” if you clean the ice chunks off the floor.

I’m having difficulty finding rock salt; I’m having to buy “Ice Cream Salt.”  The store can charge more for “Ice Cream Salt.”   That’s probably so you won’t inadvertently sprinkle this particular element on the iced-over back porch stairs.  It might turn into ice cream, and then where would we all be?

After five minutes or so, when the ice is starting to melt down a little, add some more ice and some more salt.  At this point you really ought to go get a towel out of the bathroom linen cabinet to put under the bucket.  The wood shrinks when it dries out.  Now, if that’s not a reason to make ice cream often I don’t know what is.  “But, Honey, the bucket’ll dry out and leak all over the counter.”  (I’m gonna have to hone that one a little. But she’ll think I’m cute for trying it.  Because she’ll want some ice cream  too.)

Anyway, crank the mixture for twenty minutes or so, then clear the ice and salt off the lid of the churn and see how your ice cream is coming along.  This is a very small amount of ice cream . . . after all, there are only the two of us, and it goes a long way (and I’ll probably tote it around a long time).  If you double or treble the measures, it’ll probably take longer to freeze up.  I’ll have to check.  If I remember, I’ll report back to you.

I remember when I was a kid that dildapping crank was a beast to turn after while because there were four or six quarts of ice cream freezing solid in that churn.  To the best of my memory it was always peach.  And friends, that is OK, ‘cause I surely do admire a bowl of homemade peach ice cream. (I can hear Aunt Betty and Uncle Bill and Aunt Myrt and Uncle Tommy laughing and telling stories on the big screened-in back porch around the card table.)

But homemade cranberry ice cream is truly tasty.

This summer out on our forty-five acres we’ll be churning other flavors as well.  As in wild blackberries right out of the woods.  And honey from our bees hived in the clearing.  And sassafras bark from all over the place, but mostly down by Gerald Creek.

I haven’t got around to making greenbriar jelly — after all the blood I have nourished that plant, I am seriously looking forward to eating it right down to the ground.  I have been told it’s flavorful.  If so, well, we’ll have to try a quart or two of ice cream.  I’d love to see my grandparents’ faces on that one.

And WindWalkerCamp will be the only place to get “a bowl of the fresh.”

Thank you for reading.  Lick the dasher, my friends.

What the hands learn the mind cannot forget.