Attempting to scoop rock-solid ice cream is frustrating and uncomfortable, as you extract the sweet treat sliver-by-sliver from the container. To spare the hassle, you can employ one of several quick fixes to thaw the ice cream quickly. Exercise caution when you undertake any thawing method. If the ice cream melts too much, the result may be more unpleasant than trying to make scoops out of a frozen block.
Hold the closed container of ice cream under warm running water. Position the container so that the water streams onto the lid, softening the ice cream you will scoop first. Rotate the container under the water to warm the sides, near the lid. If you are concerned about water leaking into the ice cream, open the container, press a piece of plastic wrap onto the surface of the ice cream, then place the lid back on the container.
Microwaves for Micro-Time
Place the ice cream container in a microwave set to the defrost setting. Heat the container for 5 to 10 seconds. Check the ice cream to see how much it has softened. Repeat the process, if needed.
An Alternative to Heat
If you are concerned about melting the ice cream through heated thawing methods, slice the ice cream into portions instead. Use a butcher knife or a large kitchen knife with a serrated blade. If the container is cardboard, you may be able to slice through the container itself. Otherwise, slide a butter knife around the interior sides of the container to loosen it. Then, slide the ice cream out onto a clean, dry work surface and cut portions from the block.