At the recent Time Travellers’' Picnic I included two contributions to add a level of "Steampunk" to the festivities bounty.
Dry Ice: as supplied by my laboratory (no, really) and walked over to the site in a heavily insulated box, which stayed cold till at least the next afternoon . . . Adding a pellet or two to your beverage adds a bubbling white smoke to any drink, but beware! Adding dry ice to a pre-carbonated drink leads to epic science-fail and spilt sarsaparilla! The dry ice as it sublimes partially dissolves into the solution, leading to a slight carbonation tingle to your drink, and a delightful chill but is otherwise harmless. Don't drink dry ice, it can burn with cold, and will produce copious volumes of CO2 gas. Looked fabulous, I thought. Could be used in single serves as we did at the picnic, or dropped occasionally into a punchbowl for an exciting ongoing centrepiece.
It could also be used to power some sort of laboratory glasswork and tubing setup, but that’s just not cooking!
Hand Cranked Ice-Cream: I have a wire bound wood bucket with crank ice-cream maker; the mixture (we used vanilla custard and dark chocolate chips) goes into the churn-vessel, with a special slotted paddle. This is then placed in the bucket, and the crank attached off the top. The mixture is chilled with an ice and rock-salt mixture which drops the temperature of the vessel below freezing, and with the cranking, ice-cream is made. The wood and wire look, combined with the hand-cranking action led to, in my opinion, a very Steampunk affair. Not to mention neither the exciting organic chemistry of custard nor the baffling physical chemistry of the salt-ice interactions!
One could even, given sufficient quantities of dry ice, combine the two for a bubbling, super-chilled rapid hand cranked ice-cream bonanza!