8.11.2018

The Good Humor Man

When I was a kid, growing up in a suburban Philadelphia neighborhood, the Good Humor Man was one of the highlights of summer.

Maybe you didn’t call him that - as Good Humor was the brand of ice cream he sold. Perhaps you just called him the Ice Cream Man. (I don’t know if there were any Ice Cream Women in the 1960s...)

When the truck started up the street, with that funny jingle emanating from horrible speakers, an excited joy and anticipation swept through the neighborhood.

Wherever you were, whatever you were doing, when you heard the bells, you ran to the nearest parent, and begged for coins before the truck passed you by.

A menu in lurid photographs illuminated the side of the truck, and there was a window through which the treats were sold and served.

Popsicles in every color (flavor?) imaginable; root beer was my favorite. Drumsticks – paper-wrapped ice cream cones dipped in chocolate and rolled in nuts. The “Chocolate Eclair” and “Strawberry Shortcake” ice cream bars we also favorites. What was I thinking?

Ahh... the palate of a 7-year old! I wouldn’t touch one of those now, not for love or money...

Another of the treats I loved then was the “Creamsicle” - orange sherbet on a stick filled with vanilla ice cream. To this day, I still love the combination of orange and cream.

Markipedia recently came across the recipe for today’s pasta in a book called The Land Where Lemons Grow, by British garden author Helena Attlee. She got it from Damiano Miniera, an inventive Sicilian chef at an enoteca in the hill town of Settignano above Florence. The moment we saw the recipe, we had to taste it, and the moment we tasted it, we looked at one another and said, “Creamsicle!” It flooded me with childhood memories and put a smile on my face.

It is a wonderful and unique dish, and I wanted to share it with you! Try it now, and remember it for a gloomy day next winter when you crave a splash of citrusy sunshine.

~ David

Creamsicle Pasta
Damiano Miniera

2 sweet organic oranges
1 organic lemon
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 large shallot, finely diced
1/4 cup white wine, or prosecco
1/2 cup heavy cream
salt and freshly ground black pepper
12 ounces spaghetti

Bring a large kettle of water to a boil. Salt the water well and add the pasta.

Bring a small saucepan of water to a boil. Using a vegetable peeler, remove the zest from the oranges and lemon. Slice all the zest very thinly - “razor thin,” as the recipe says. Add the zest to the small saucepan and boil for 5 minutes to soften and rid the zest of any bitterness. Drain in a sieve.

Juice the oranges and lemon, removing any seeds.

Heat the butter in a large skillet. When melted, add the shallot and cook until clear; do not brown. Add the cooked zest, juice, wine, and cream, and cook at a brisk simmer until thickened - about 5 minutes. Season with salt and plenty of freshly ground pepper.

Toss the pasta with the sauce and divide among 4 heated pasta bowls.

Serves 4.

33 comments:

  1. Sounds wonderful. Love creamsickles.

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  2. I remember running to the ice cream truck in Scotland, but we didn't have root beer or strawberry shortcake, not even sure if the orange creamsicle was available! I would always go for what we called a "double nougat". https://www.pinterest.com/pin/538109855446121089/ Now this "creamsicle" pasta is another thing, so different than anything I've tasted in the way of pasta, but I'd definitely be willing to try it! :)

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    1. It’s fun to know “ice cream men/women” are international! The double nougat looks wonderful!

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  3. No more Good Humor Man over here but during summer festivals, local enterprisers to bring the tradition back and organize the rounds aroud the town.... funny, my son doesn't find it that spectacular :-( times change, right ?
    I would gladly give an empire for a plate of pasta with citruses !

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    1. It’s hard when younger generations don’t appreciate things that we found so special when we were young. I think we had less when we were young, so every little thing seems so special! If you try this pasta, I hope you like it!

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  4. Can't wait for the weather to cool off...for many reasons - and you've just given me one more reason to add at the top of the list! Looking forward to trying this and using it often! Thanks so much. ��

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    1. Clotilde - I truly hope you get a break from the heat soon! I remember a heat wave like this several summers ago in Europe… It never seem to end!

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  5. David, I already know I will love this dish! Thank you for sharing this recipe and your photos are wonderful (as always!). We had an ice cream man that came down our street and my younger brother and I would RUN straight inside to beg for change when we heard the music!! We always got the Flinstone push-up pops...orange sherbet on a stick!! :)

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    1. I don’t remember the Flintstone push-up pops, but they sound wonderful! Enjoy the pasta, Marcelle!

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  6. Great timing! We were in a cooking class yesterday and the chef said how much he loved the combination of pasta and citrus.

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    1. I love being on the cutting edge, Carolyne! Your BBQ class sounds fun…

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  7. I had no 'Good Humour Man' in my childhood and the word 'creamsicle' does not belong in my vocabulary :) ! And have not had citrus in my pasta either so this post is a veritable curiosity-raising lesson: practical work soon to follow!

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    1. I think you can skip the ice cream man, and the Creamsicle… But you shouldn’t skip this pasta! Have a great week, Eha!

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  8. David, I just arrived in Bella Toscana and will be making this for my Tuscan “famiglia” tonight. I usually am requested to make my pasta limone con panna fresca, so this will be a nice surprise/change for them and me. And....in the late 60’s I was an ice cream girl during summer break in college, so yes, there was at least one!

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    1. How wonderful that you just arrived in Tuscany, Linda! As you know, it’s one of my favorite places on earth… I feel guilty, as if I’m cheating on Tuscany, but going to Sicily this year. I am sure she will forgive me. I hope everyone likes the pasta…

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    2. PS - I’m glad to know there were ice cream women, as well!

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  9. As a fellow child of the 60's, I remember the ice cream "man" with fondness. Your right though, I never remember seeing an ice cream woman.
    We called them Dreamsicles and it was my favorite. Can't wait to give this dish a try.

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    1. Thanks, Ron – I love the name Dreamsicle! It seems perfect for that treat. Enjoy the pastor! And thanks for your comment.

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  10. Brilliant, David! I've made (and blogged about) a similar recipe using just lemons, but this sounds really nice, too. Perhaps even more appealing, in fact, with its blend of lemons and oranges.

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    1. I have to say, Frank, the combination of orange and lemon is amazing! However, I can’t wait to try your lemon version… More is always better! Did you get the recipe in Sicily?

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  11. My brother and I would also RUN to catch the ice cream man before he zipped past our house. The Drumstick and Chocolate Eclair were my favorites. Who cares what's in them - I would happily devour one for the childhood thrill :). Thanks for the lovely memory and look forward to trying this recipe.

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    1. Thanks, Doreen! It really is fun to go back in our memory banks... such a trove of treasures! I hope you and Michael try the pasta soon! xo

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  12. Love this combination too. My dad used to make an Orange Julius which I loved. I've never had this blend of flavors in something savory like this. I'm going to try it!

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    1. Valentina - I love pasta recipes that use fruits. So unusual and refreshing! I hope you like it!

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  13. This sounds so refreshing, what a great idea. I must try this!

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  14. This is really creative. Neat idea -- such a fun combo of flavors. Small world -- until the 5th grade, I lived in a Philly suburb too (Cheltenham). Loved those Good Humor trucks. And their contents, of course. :-)

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    1. One of my best friends was from Cheltenham - we played together in the Philadelphia Youth Orchestra. And we played you in football, though I never saw that happen! John, being the cocktail king, this is like a Sidecar on a plate!

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  15. David, yes, please, I'll take a huge plate of creamsicle pasta this very minute! This is one I must make soon. The ice cream man was much appreciated during the hot summers of my childhood. Of course, I haven't had a "commercial" non-organic ice cream bar or ice cream in decades, but I still remember the Sidewalk Sundae and Big Stick as particular favorites along with orange or pineapple push-ups and Creamsicles. Oh and popsicles--orange, lime or root beer.

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    1. This has been a really fun post, Jean - bringing back memories for so many of us!

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  16. Even back in the day I preferred the Creamsicle! Well that and the Bomb Pop... GREG

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    1. I never had a Bomb Pop. Damn, Greg - now I want one!

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