The No. 1 claim I didn’t know about ice cream

It’s national economic crisis-based, according to Dreyer’s (PDF).

At the time of Rocky Road’s birth in 1929, almost all ice cream was made in three flavors ““ vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry ““ and was always served as sundaes. Dreyer added walnuts (later replaced with almonds) to his chocolate ice cream and, using his wife’s sewing shears, cut marshmallows into bite-sized pieces to make the first batch of Rocky Road. Dreyer and Edy picked a flavor name to give folks something to smile about in the face of the Great Depression. Rocky Road became America’s first blockbuster flavor and remains one of the best-selling flavors of all time.

I wish there were a few more sources for the naming. As Wikipedia points out, there’s at least one alternate story about the ingredients. But Google turns up nothing more … except a book called The Strategic Use of Stories in Organizational Communication and Learning interviews a Dreyer’s ethic chief and the author notes on the Rocky Road story, “It’s not a long drawn out narrative, yet the imagery is rich and generates associations.” Various results in Google News put the invention a few weeks after the stock market crash in ’29, but none are sourced.

Building off this story/legend/whatever, Edy’s-Dreyer’s is now running a contest where you help introduce a national economic crisis-based flavor and get $100,000 to turn around your Rocky Road of a life.

5 thoughts on “The No. 1 claim I didn’t know about ice cream”

  1. Good to know!! Ice-cream related news, I was in L.L. Bean today and it was love at first sight when I saw this: (I somehow resisted buying it though)

    This alone could change my Rocky Road of a life (though I wouldn’t argue with $100K if it came my way). :)

  2. I see this as a dangerous gateway for you. First, it’s the ice cream ball, then it’s the funnel cake maker, and next thing you know it’s you and Jack Lalanne doing push-ups in front of a studio audience with a thousand pallets sitting in a Juarez warehouse and those juicers aren’t going to sell themselves…

  3. Also, found in Googling funnel cake: NPR Kitchen Window where girls attempt funnel cake when mother isn’t home, disaster ensues. It goes on: “Afterward, we got a shovel and buried the funnel cake in the backyard — where, in a rare burst of good judgment, we figured no one would think to look for it. I went back three times to check it, feeling sure some sort of spiral-shaped bare patch would bear witness to our ignominy in future years.”

    I gotta say, if I bury a funnel cake, the reason I check back is to see if there’s a funnel cake tree.

  4. Lol! Funnel cake tree. I like it. Wonder if they’d grow on apartment balconies as well…

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