I've always wondered about this, and maybe you have, too: can you ship an ice cream cone in the mail?
The obvious answer is no. Ice cream melts quickly, is highly perishable, and would likely arrive as a puddle. When regular carton ice cream is shipped, it's packed all crazy in dry ice, a shipping method which isn't quite as accessible as popping a stamp and dropping an envelope in a box.
But still. I wanted to know...how would an ice cream cone arrive?
So, in the name of science, I decided to do a little shipping experiment.
I shipped myself an ice cream cone in the mail.
First, I assembled materials: I printed a shipping label (I shipped to myself), got a padded envelope and airtight bag, and got in the car.
Next, I went to the closest ice cream shop, which happened to be Baskin-Robbins, where I picked up a scoop of mint chocolate chip. With sprinkles, because, well, rainbows!
This cone never saw what was coming.
Then, I performed the following steps, which you can see in photo form: I packed the cone in the airtight bag, gently forcing excess air out, and sealed it. I folded it over and put the cone in the envelope, which I then sealed. I approached the mailbox with trepidation. Would this work? The package felt cold in my hand.
The very next day (which is impressive because as odd as it sounds, in Santa Fe the mail goes to Albuquerque to be sorted then comes back) I had a special arrival. It still felt cold, but I think this was just because it was a cold day. The envelope felt pretty much the same, if a bit thinner.
When I opened it up, here is what I found:
Ice cream cone massacre!
Although actually, that having been said, it wasn't as bad as I had feared. I had feared a lightly green dripping mess arriving in a soggy envelope. This was actually pretty tame, and the cone held its shape way better than I would have thought.
After considering it for a few moments, I put the entire bag in the freezer, aligned just so, so that the ice cream could pool in one portion of the bag and re-solidify.
At this particular moment, it's still in the freezer, and I'm pondering eating it. I know it got warm then cold again, but I am alarmingly not scared of bacteria, eating cookie dough willy-nilly and cake batter with a vengeance, and I haven't died yet.