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We all scream for ice cream!

We all scream for ice cream!

July is National Ice Cream Month

If there is one thing that brings the kid out in all of us, it’s ice cream! Who can resist a cool creamy cone on a hot summer day or a scoop on their favorite dessert? Not many. According to the USDA, about 1.53 billion gallons of ice cream and related frozen desserts were produced in the U.S. in 2011, and, the U.S. ice cream industry generated total revenues of $10 billion in 2010. That’s a lot of scoops!

Jaden Adrianse, 7 (left), and Kyle Morris, 8 (right), both of Cedar Springs, enjoy an ice cream cone from KC’s Kones and Coneys.

According to the International Dairy Association, America’s top five favorite individual flavors are vanilla, chocolate, cookies ‘n cream, strawberry and chocolate chip mint, with vanilla outranking them all.

But favorites are often regional. Cleve Kasper, owner of KC Kones and Coneys at the corner of N. Main St. and 18 Mile in Cedar Springs, said his biggest sellers are butter pecan and mint chocolate chip. Kasper has a smorgasbord of flavors, and would like to see people try some of his other flavors as well. New flavors include birthday cake, with actual cake pieces and sprinkles inside, and mini peanut butter cups and fudge.

ice-cream-conesFor those seeking something a little lighter, KC offers some frozen yogurt flavors such as cookies and cream, with real Oreos, and they also offer a no sugar added peanut butter cup flavor. But what’s Cleve’s favorite? “My favorite is the caramel cone crunch,” he said, explaining that it’s waffle cone pieces that give it the crunch. You might want to try it or some of the other offerings they have.

If you are into something bigger, Sparta Tasty Treat will be having their banana split eating contest again this Saturday, July 14, at 3 p.m. The ice cream shop has been doing this for years as part of the Sparta Town and Country Days. They also offer 5 or 10-foot banana splits that you can order for parties, and 5-pound ice cream cakes.

If you are looking for smaller portions, check out Big Boy’s mini ice cream offerings. They also have a line of Michigan-made ice creams.

This Sunday is National Ice Cream Day. Celebrate it by visiting one of the ice cream shops on this page, or make some of your own.

A sweet, cool treat to try

(NAPS)—Americans, it seems, are really hot for ice cream. People in the United States indulge more than those in any other nation, averaging 48 pints of ice cream per person, per year. Ninety-eight percent of all U.S. households purchase ice cream, with more sold on Sunday than any other day of the week. Here are a few more Cool Facts:

•    The first ice cream parlor in America opened in New York City in 1776.
•    George Washington loved ice cream and had two ice cream machines at his home.
•    It takes 12 gallons of milk to make one gallon of ice cream.
•    The most popular flavors are Vanilla, Chocolate, Butter Pecan, Strawberry and Neapolitan, followed closely by Chocolate Chip, French Vanilla and Cookies & Cream.
•    Cherry is the No. 1 Popsicle flavor.
•    Twin Popsicles were invented during the Depression so that two children could share one treat.

Now you can find special deals on ice cream and novelties at the grocery store as the National Frozen & Refrigerated Foods Association (NFRA) celebrates this love for cool treats with an annual June/July Summer Favorites Ice Cream & Novelties promotion.

Those experts on cool foods remind you to make the ice cream aisle your last stop, keep frozen purchases together in a separate section of the cart, and pack ice cream in an additional brown paper bag for the ride home.
Once you get home, you may care to try this tasty, favorite ice cream dessert:

Ice Cream with  Hot Fudge Sauce

1/2 gallon vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt
2 (1-ounce) squares semi-sweet chocolate
1 Tbsp. butter
2/3 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
¼ tsp. salt
1 cup evaporated milk
Maraschino cherries (for garnish)

For sauce, heat, melt and stir chocolate, butter, sugar, vanilla and salt together. Gradually add the evaporated milk, continuously stirring. Bring to a light boil over medium heat and cook until sauce is smooth and thickened (about 10 minutes). To serve, place large scoops of ice cream in each dish and top with Hot Fudge Sauce and cherries. Serves 6.

For additional recipes and tips and a chance to win a coupon, visit www.EasyHomeMeals.com or www.facebook.com/EasyHome Meals.

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