“No one says Doris Day is their favourite star, in the way no one says vanilla is their favourite ice cream flavour. Yet a heck of a lot of vanilla ice cream gets sold.”

-Peter Bradshaw, Doris Day’s obituary in The Guardian


Of course you can always simply buy vanilla ice cream, although take care, there is a wide range of quality – go here to find out which is best and which to avoid. Probably the best thunder and lightening ice cream is produced by Maud’s which has outlets in Northern Ireland, Newcastle and Windsor – their trademark flavour is Pooh Bear’s Delight.

However, it is VERY simple to make your own and you do not need fancy ice cream makers or to constantly rake it over.  This ice cream is particularly good because it never gets really hard and once out of the freezer it softens up beautifully.

Listen to the song from Frozen to get you into the mood, as you mix this up.


Recipe for velvet vanilla ice cream

makes over a litre – enough for about 8


  • 600 ml/2½ cups double cream
  • 400g/14 oz tin condensed milk
  • 2 tsp Madagascan vanilla paste


  1. Whisk all together in a large bowl until you reach the soft-peaks stage.
  2. Pour into a plastic Tupperware box.
  3. Put in the freezer for twelve hours or so.
  4. Take out about 15 minutes before you’re due to serve it.


There is a host of things you can either add to vanilla ice cream; or serve with it.


Things you can add and mix in to vanilla ice cream:
  • to make thunder and lightening ice cream simply add honeycomb – to find out how to make honeycomb go here – or simply add a crushed Crunchie bar
  • chopped prunes or dates soaked in brandy – drain, mix the dates or prunes in with the ice cream, serve the reserved liquor warm with the ice cream
  • crystallised ginger
  • rum soaked raisins – as with the prunes or dates serve the warmed reserved liquor with the ice cream. If you don’t want to use alcohol soak the raisins in tea instead
  • chopped After Eight mints
  • chips of Amadei Porcelana chocolate (possibly the best chocolate in the world)…. or any chocolate you really like
  • Amarena Fabbri sour cherries – as with the prunes serve the liquor they come in separately
  • lemon or lime zest – the lime zest goes especially well with chips of Montezuma Sea Dog chocolate
  • chopped pistachios, honey (Sardinian bitter honey, or chestnut honey, if you can get it)
  • Nutella. If you make this, sandwich it between slices of French Toast as they do at Spuntino.
  • fruit curd
  • jam


ice cream with jam

You can add in any sort of jam which needs using up – a generous half cup for the amounts in this recipe.


Things you can serve with vanilla ice cream:
vanilla ice cream recipe

add honeycomb to make thunder and lightening ice cream



Below, Doris Day, the Hollywood equivalent of vanilla ice cream, sings A Sentimental Journey.