Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Making Ice-Cream in Cape Town

We're big on treats in our household- things like eating out occasionally, having dessert, special day trips, and so on (this is why Eug and I both have fairly large personal allowances for all non-essential spending, so that we can treat each other to meals and buy gifts and meals for family, and pay entrance fees or whatever). When we don't have a newborn, we reserve one day of the week for something out-of-the-ordinary, and we have dessert or something every night after Noah (the kids??) are asleep.

For the past 5 months, this hasn't included ice-cream, because, at least in SA supermarkets, ice-cream is full of strange, strange ingredients, and cream is not one of them.

So, for my birthday, Eug bought me an ice-cream maker and so began our ice-cream making.

A Cost-Benefit Analysis 

  • The cost of the ice-cream maker is R600 
  • The cost of a 1L-2L batch of home made ice-cream is R10-R20, depending on your source of cream, yoghurt, or milk.
  • The cost of 2L of ice-cream in the supermarket is about R40-R60, if you buy a single serving at a nice ice-cream shop it can cost R30. Steers Ice-cream with dip is R10/serving.
  • Depending on how often you get ice-cream from these different sources, your break-even point may be earlier or later. I think we'll break even at about 30 weeks, which seems like a reasonable point.
Intangible Costs: Storage
  • After being super careful about getting appliances, we have another appliance. oh well. It's a fun one.
Hard-to-calculate Benefits: Health
  • The store-bought ice-cream didn't make us feel particularly good, so the ice-cream we're making in the ice-cream maker feels and tastes tons, tons better. 
  • We're able to drastically reduce the amount of sugar in our dessert, without feeling deprived. I have a major sweet tooth and I'm surprised by how much it can be satiated without processed sugar now: 
My favorite ice-cream/frozen yoghurt recipe so far doesn't have any sugar. It's
  • 3 bananas
  • about a cup of plain whole milk yoghurt
  • A little less than a cup of milk.
It's surprisingly sweet and lovely. Although we don't always have cream in the house, we usually do have plain yoghurt, which I try to make from scratch. When the yoghurt is made from scratch, the cost of the ice-cream is really, really low- less than R10 for 4-6 servings. 

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