Frozen Tom and Jerry (Ice Cream)

ice cream in dishFrozen Tom and Jerry is an ice cream that is named after a classic cocktail called a Tom and Jerry. The cocktail is a hot holiday drink that is similar to hot eggnog, but contains both rum and brandy. Frozen Tom and Jerry is a delightful ice cream that has a hint of rum and brandy, and is perfect forย  a hot summer day.

I found the recipe in the 1921 edition of the Boston Cooking-School Cook Book. According to my daughter, Frozen Tom and Jerry could be served at a party, and no one would guess that the recipe was a hundred years old. (I think this is a compliment.)

I was intrigued that this recipe (as well as others in this cookbook) called for alcohol. Since prohibition began in the U.S. in 1920, and alcohol was prohibited, few 1921 cookbooks list any alcoholic beverages as a recipe ingredient. The Boston Cooking-School Cook Book is an exception and there are numerous recipes which call for alcohol – maybe because it was an update of a pre-prohibition cookbook. I wonder where cooks were supposed to purchase the brandy and rum used in the recipe.

Here’s the original recipe:

Recipe for Frozen Tom and Jerry
Source: The Boston Cooking-School Cook Book (1921 Edition)

Here’s the recipe updated for modern cooks:

Frozen Tom and Jerry (Ice Cream)

  • Servings: about 1 1/2 quarts
  • Difficulty: moderate
  • Print

2 cups milk

3/4 cup sugar

6 egg yolks, beaten

1/8 teaspoon salt

2 1/2 cups heavy cream

2 tablespoons rum

1 tablespoon brandy

In a large saucepan, put milk, sugar, egg yolks, and salt; stir to combine. Using medium heat, cook the mixture while stirring continuously until the mixture is hot and steamy, and coats a spoon. It should be removed from the heat before it boils. Strain; then put in the refrigerator to chill. When cold, stir in the cream, put in ice cream freezer and freeze. When the ice cream is frozen and close to being done, add the rum and brandy. Continue freezing in the ice cream freezer until the rum and brandy is thoroughly mixed into the ice cream (about 2-3 minutes).

When I made this recipe, I used a 1 1/2 quart automatic ice cream maker that used a bowl which is frozen in the freezer overnight, but a regular ice cream maker would also work.

27 thoughts on “Frozen Tom and Jerry (Ice Cream)

  1. Had to chuckle at your question “where would they get the alcohol” — they’d just go to the local speakeasy and borrow a cup ; ) This recipe sounds tasty. Do you make meringue cookies w/the left-over egg whites?
    Perhaps the 1920’s was the era that brought us artificial flavorings?

    1. The speakeasy makes sense to me. ๐Ÿ™‚ I should have made meringue cookies with the left-over egg whites, but I didn’t. I’ve definitely made recipes from the 1910’s that called for vanilla or lemon extract. I don’t know whether those extracts were made with actual vanilla and lemon – or if they were artificial flavors.

  2. Sounds tasty and easy enough… Love the history lesson as I never thought about the link between prohibition and cooking! What about the wine needed for so many of the French cooking recipes?!?! My mind is officially boggled!

  3. This sounds really delicious! Prohibition liquor. I think it was much easier to get alcohol during this period than people think, they could even get it at pharmacies. Local cops often looked the other way if they got a little bottle to take home for themselves. My grandmother and grandfather, who also lived in Vermont, used to got visit their French Canadian relatives and bring back cases and cases of booze. I have my grandmother’s little notebook that listed things like “Four cases Canadian Club whiskey…” They brought a lot back, and I’m told that if they were stopped, they simply offered up a bottle! Additionally, while it was illegal to produce and distribute the liquor, it was not illegal to consume it. Lots of strange regulations, and many more loopholes!

    1. What a fun story! I hadn’t realized that the laws applied to production and distribution, but not consumption. It’s interesting how the regulations (and loopholes) worked.

  4. There is that rum and brandy again.
    I saw someone on TV say “rum brandy” when pouring a drink.
    Apparently rum and brandy are a tasty combination.

  5. This sounds like a nice hot day treat! I suspect that most homes had laid in a supply of essential alcohol products prior to prohibition’s start, perhaps the recipes were left from a previous edition or just in hopes of someday! Fun to think about!

  6. What I enjoy about stopping by to read your posts is that I always learn something new. I had never heard of the cocktail or the ice cream.

    1. It’s nice to hear that you enjoy the posts on this blog. Similarly to you, I’d never heard of a Tom and Jerry cocktail until after I saw the old ice cream recipe. I then googled “Tom and Jerry” and discovered that it was a drink –and the name of the ice ream then made sense.

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