Each week, we rummage through the dark corners of our kitchen drawers to bring you an enigmatic item. We ask you to guess what it is in our weekly From the From the Back of the Drawer puzzle. To enter this week’s puzzle, visit this page. To read more descriptions of past items, visit this page. And, don’t forget to donate your odd items to the Southern Food and Beverage Museum.
This week, we found a square ice cream scoop!
The best description of the “Polar Pak” comes from the patent itself, granted in 1932 to Joseph Brezin of Philadelphia, PA, assignor to Philadelphia Ice Cream Cone Machinery Company: “The invention relates to a dispensing device which is particularly adapted to fill baked ice-cream receptacles with a charge of ice-cream of substantially rectangular configuration, although it will be understood that with slight modification the preferred form below described may be arranged to dispense other shaped charges of plastic material.
It has long been customary to provide as confections baked ice-cream cones charged with ice-cream, the ice-cream remaining to a substantial degree beyond the upper extremity of the cone. Melting of the ice-cream in one of these cones permits the molten cream to flow down the outside in an objectionable manner, and recently there has come into extended use a baked receptacle of substantially rectangular configuration into which a block of ice-cream is placed without any substantial projection therefrom. Charging of these receptacles by means of a spoon, or the like, is difficult, and it is accordingly the object of the present invention to provide a dispensing means for charging one of these receptacles in a rapid and easy manner.”
The scooper was specially designed to fill a new form of a cone made by the Automatic Cone Company of Cambridge, Massachusetts, a three-sided wafer that would hold ice cream like a sandwich without the ice cream overflowing from the wafer or melting down the sides. Apparently, production didn’t last long: sandwich makers objected to the crowding of the ice cream, which lowered their profits. The scoops were also manufactured in oval shapes, for banana splits, and triangle shapes, for pie a la mode, but production of these, too, didn’t last long.
Check out the Polar Pak Square Ice Cream Scoop in action at the Creole Creamery!
Our rating: Give it away.
Design: Average, a big flaw is the thumb rest. It curves inward, while an outward-curving rest would have given more leverage.
Originality: Excellent, now we take packaged ice cream sandwiches for granted, but at the time, this was really novel. Your comfort in giving it away will be that an ice cream enthusiast out there will have more fun using than you will.
Practicality: Poor, without the proper accompanying wafer, you have to make bar cookies or brownies of just the perfect size to go along with the scoop. Alternately, you can use round cookies and a round scoop, so this will probably not catch on soon.
Special thanks to Chef Bryan Gilmore at Creole Creamery for helping us to demonstrate the scoop.