Assalamu-alaikum (peace be upon you) youngins, elders, and all ages in-between,

One of the greatest American past-times (at least in the opinion of our IYG Mentors) is the joyful consumption of a delicious bowl of cold, refreshing ice cream. Layering a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top of a soft chocolate chip cookie or brownie and topping with sensational syrup (chocolate, strawberry, caramel and so much more to choose from!), M &Ms, peanuts, sprinkles, or a bright red cherry is a simple delight sure to cheer up any sad face. A few years back, our IYG members decided to take on the challenge of making homemade ice cream using a few simple ingredients – a plastic Ziploc bag, some ice, a little bit of salt, vanilla extract, milk, and cream. Using fashionable oven mitts our youth gleefully shook the contents placed in the Ziploc bag until (after what seemed like FOREVER to some youth) there emerged the familiar creamy white product we all love – ICE CREAM! As time has passed by and our mentors kept reflecting back on this event awaiting for a day in the not so distant future where homemade ice cream could be made. As they waited for this moment, they fulfilled their ice cream craves with quick pit stops to Coldstone Creamery and the local supermarket for economic deals on ice cream. Well, Friday night, the long wait finally ended for our youth and mentors as we finally had the opportunity to prepare homemade ice cream.

There was one unique twist introduced in Friday evening’s ice cream challenge compared to our first attempt to make ice cream – every single item (from the ice cream to the syrup, and cookies) was made from scratch by our young men (with careful supervision and eagle eyes of our mentors of course!). Instead of using a Ziploc bag to make ice cream, this time Mr. Issa decided to move IYG to the 21st century by lending us a beautiful, counter top ice cream machine. Our young men were carefully separated into 3 teams – Team IC (Ice Cream), Team Sippy (to make our syrup toppings), and Team Triple-C (chocolate chip cookies).¬† Team IC had the wonderful challenge of mixing heavy cream, vanilla extract, sugar (lots of it thanks to Hamza!), salt, and milk together before carefully placing in the ice cream machine to churn for 45 minutes. Meanwhile, Team Sippy utilized 2 saucepans to prepare caramel and chocolate syrup using an array of cool ingredients involving sugar, chocolate chips, and corn syrup, water. A few young men put a blender to good use to prepare a sweet raspberry sauce that was the favorite of our mentors. Finally, Team Triple-C pulled out a large, bright blue mixing bowl and proceeded to toss in eggs, flour, chocolate chips, vanilla extract, brown and white sugar in a ratio sufficient to produce the best chocolate chip cookies our eyes had ever seen. After popping the cookie dough in the oven for 10 minutes, out emerged the base for our ice cream cookies, gooey, delicious chocolate chip cookies.

While we wish you could taste the final products made by our youth, we’ll leave you with a few photos that capture our hard-working young men in action. Please excuse our mentors as they go grab another bowl of ice cream…

Young men ready for action. Basim looks focused, on-point, and ready for his task. Proceed forward with caution gentlemen...

Young men ready for action. Basim looks focused, on-point, and ready for his task. Proceed forward with caution gentlemen…

 

Murtaza assists Ahmed in measuring sugar to add to our ice cream batter.

Murtaza assists Ahmed in measuring sugar to add to our ice cream batter.

 

"Is this enough salt?" asks Muhammad. It depends which hand he is referring to. If it is his right hand, then no!

“Is this enough salt?” asks Muhammad. It depends which hand he is referring to. If it is his right hand, then no!

 

We can't tell if Abdelrahman is going for the French or Italian chef look. What do you think?

We can’t tell if Abdelrahman is going for the French or Italian chef look. What do you think?

 

Team 3C resisting the urge to devour the ingredients before them. Please let us begin making cookies!

Team 3C resisting the urge to devour the ingredients before them. Please let us begin making cookies!

 

Ata cracks open the box of baking powder and carefully adds a teaspoon to our cookie batter mix.

Ata cracks open the box of baking powder and carefully adds a teaspoon to our cookie batter mix.

 

NurEldin and Shujath crack two eggs from our friendly neighborhood chicken and adds the eggs (but not the chicken) to our cookie batter.

NurEldin and Shujath crack two eggs from our friendly neighborhood chicken and adds the eggs (but not the chicken) to our cookie batter. Where did our butter go?

 

NourEldin slowly adds chocolate chips as Ata briskly whips our cookie batter into shape. Mustafa provides visual surveillance from above the mixing bowl to make sure things are looking cookie-good.

NourEldin slowly adds chocolate chips as Ata briskly whips our cookie batter into shape. Mustafa provides visual surveillance from above the mixing bowl to make sure things are looking cookie-good.

 

Mustafa give his seal of approval before the cookies head into the oven for a little baking action.

Mustafa give his seal of approval before the cookies head into the oven for a little baking action.

 

e's baaaaaccccckkkkk! Halalapalooza 2012 jokester, Hamza, is back to his usually mentor-scaring routine.

e’s baaaaaccccckkkkk! Halalapalooza 2012 jokester, Hamza, is back to his usually mentor-scaring routine.

 

Team Sippy gets ready to make syrup for our ice cream. Wait, who gave Danyal the chocolate chip bag?!? He's about to make a syrup that is too chocolatey!

Team Sippy gets ready to make syrup for our ice cream. Wait, who gave Danyal the chocolate chip bag?!? He’s about to make a syrup that is too chocolatey!

 

I know what you're thinking but this is NOT blood. It's actually our super-duper, blended raspberry syrup!

I know what you’re thinking but this is NOT blood. It’s actually our super-duper, blended raspberry syrup!

 

Anyone want to try a cookie?

Anyone want to try a cookie?

 

Now this is what you call excellence!

Now this is what you call excellence!

 

Hungry youth devour cookies and ice cream quickly. I think they like the final product alhamdulillah!

Hungry youth devour cookies and ice cream quickly. I think they like the final product alhamdulillah!

We’re still deciding if we should keep our recipes a trade secret or share them with the world (we joke, we joke!). Rest assured if we decide to make the recipes available to the public, you’ll be the first one to get access to the secret.

 

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