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Vanilla Ice Cream: Why is it so Hard? :)


Rodi
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I've been working on my vanilla ice cream since day one! I got very excited over David Lebovitz book the perfect scoop. I made great vanilla. But I had an issue with the recipe. Why so much fat? Right? The more I continued to make vanilla ice cream with the 2 to 1 heavy cream to whole milk, the heavier my conscience became!

I have worked real hard to get quality results using fresh ingredients, but as I cut out the fat, the ice cream paid a price. I now use the following mix 1qt heavy cream, 1 qt whole milk, 1 qt skim milk, roughly 14% milk fat, the equivalent of commercial premiums. I also use 24 egg yolks,3 cups sugar and 1 package of powdered milk. I add a couple of Tablespoons of cheap vanilla to the eggs. When the ice cream has cooled, I add vanilla paste and the good vanilla I have on hand (from Uganda!) The ice cream tasted great but the texture was too icy and grainy! So I added corn starch to the custard. Still to icy!!

Now I had read about Xanthan gum. I found some at Whole Foods. Last batch I did not

I am almost there. My last batch was great, far less grainy and icy, but I did not use corn starch, which I think would put me over the top.

An interesting thing I found too, that my second batch came out much better putting less in the ice cream maker (Whynter Sno 1/2 gallon machine).

I am excited because now I have a solid recipe for french vanilla.

Next step for a Philadelphia style for fruit ice creams (eggs+Fruit=look bad :)

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Yesterday I made the Whiskey Ice Cream from "Heston Blumenthal At Home" -- absolutely fabulous!

The recipe calls for 500 g of whole milk (no cream!)

6 large egg yolks,

175g unrefined caster sugar (I just used ordinary sugar)

270g of "soured" cream (I just used ordinary store-bought)

40g of malt whiskey (I used Tennessee Honey, by Jack Daniels)

1 kg of dry ice pellets, crushed in a clean tea towel with a rolling pin into small crystals.

Since I have two Dewars of liquid nitrogen, I didn't use the dry ice, but instead used LN2. This was the first time I've used LN2 to make ice cream.

Once you start pouring it into the KitchenAid mixing bowl (already on the stand and ready to go) it is very hard to see what you are doing, or how much you've used. I'm strictly guessing, but I would say less than a liter.

Just pour in some, start the mixer, and if it doesn't look cold enough, add a little bit more until it does.

The results were spectacular -- the finest, smoothest, tastiest ice cream I've ever had, with absolutely no ice crystals.

I can't wait to try some of his other recipes, such as bacon and eggs ice cream, or something I've always want to try here in New Mexico, green chili ice cream. (Hey, Heston has mustard ice cream, so why not? MIght be pretty good on a hot taco!)

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Hi Jenni,

I'm trying to make a commercially viable product, not just going for taste alone, which I already have done via the perfect scoop. But just imagine if you were looking over the label of an ice cream with that much FAT. Fat also gets in the way of the flavor. Besides I like to eat a fair amount of my ice cream.

I use milk and skim milk for various reasons and good taste results. Skim milk has solids that cream does not. Whole milk fat particles are great for ice cream, or so I have read (and my product does taste amazing!) As far as cream goes, I usually use fresh, but have used store bought.

Teonzo, Thank YOU!!!

I am very serious about Ice Cream and am excited to learn and experiment.

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Fair enough I suppose. I come from a land where clotted cream ice cream is held in high regard so I can't really imagine fussing about fat content! I have never found that the fat in the cream "got in the way" of the flavour but maybe that's just me.

Do let us know when you come up with your most successful recipe...and let us know where it will be sold too!

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A funny thing is, that my mom (from France) raised us on a butter heavy cream diet. I generally have no issue with adding fat! However, if I can I do prefer less fat. Think of how Gelato has more intense taste than ice cream, it is because the fat gets in the way of the flavor, it coats your tongue!

I will share my recipes as they become perfected, but not just yet, who knows, perhaps I will name my first vanilla "Jenni" :)

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^^^

Maybe you are right, all I know is that the vanilla ice cream I made was divine and 4 of us finished it very quickly! I think the simplicity and high quality ingredients made a difference.

I do not think I have had enough gelato to speak with any authority on it. But I can say that my favourite frozen milk product is kulfi. This is made from whole milk which is cooked down so it is reduced in volume. I personally do not feel that low fat milk should be allowed anywhere near this dish! I feel the same way about other Indian milk sweets such as rabdi, peda, etc. My daily food is not swimming in fat but there are some things that I feel should be always be full fat and enjoyed in modest quantities. But this is just my opinion and if you can make a lower fat product that you enjoy eating more than the full fat version, then more power to you.

And definitely do not call it Jenni! On this thread if we are going by who has been more helpful, you should call it Teo or Robert!

Edited by Jenni (log)
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I've been working on my vanilla ice cream since day one! I got very excited over David Lebovitz book the perfect scoop. I made great vanilla. But I had an issue with the recipe. Why so much fat? Right? The more I continued to make vanilla ice cream with the 2 to 1 heavy cream to whole milk, the heavier my conscience became!

I have worked real hard to get quality results using fresh ingredients, but as I cut out the fat, the ice cream paid a price. I now use the following mix 1qt heavy cream, 1 qt whole milk, 1 qt skim milk, roughly 14% milk fat, the equivalent of commercial premiums. I also use 24 egg yolks,3 cups sugar and 1 package of powdered milk. I add a couple of Tablespoons of cheap vanilla to the eggs. When the ice cream has cooled, I add vanilla paste and the good vanilla I have on hand (from Uganda!) The ice cream tasted great but the texture was too icy and grainy! So I added corn starch to the custard. Still to icy!!

Now I had read about Xanthan gum. I found some at Whole Foods. Last batch I did not

I am almost there. My last batch was great, far less grainy and icy, but I did not use corn starch, which I think would put me over the top.

An interesting thing I found too, that my second batch came out much better putting less in the ice cream maker (Whynter Sno 1/2 gallon machine).

I am excited because now I have a solid recipe for french vanilla.

Next step for a Philadelphia style for fruit ice creams (eggs+Fruit=look bad :)

As I recall, David advises against using low fat milks such as 2% etc. because they cause the grainy texture you want to avoid. The fat in ice cream coats the water molecules and prevents them from freezing. Emulsifiers help keep the water and fat molecules together. I have started to use Cremodan 30 stabilizer and the results are much creamier and do not freeze as hard, which makes them easier to scoop. You use 0.5% in the mix.

I am working on an eggless version with whole milk 73%, sugar 10%, non-fat dry milk 9.5%, light corn syrup 5.5%, invert sugar 1.5% and Cremodan 30 0.5%. Add any flavor you want to this base. I recently harvested a lot of hickory nuts. These are darn near the hardest nuts to crack, but with a brick and a hammer I broke some up and steeped them in the milk for a few hours, strained out the solids and made this mix. It came out very creamy with an unusual nutty flavor. No ice crystals at all.

Paul Eggermann

Vice President, Secretary and webmaster

Les Marmitons of New Jersey

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Think of how Gelato has more intense taste than ice cream

Please pardon my ignorance, but I've never been in an English speaking country, so I lack in too many things about English language.

I thought that "ice-cream" was the English translation of the Italian word "gelato" (a term that, here in Italy, indicates that generic kind of frozen preparations), so I always assumed "gelato = ice-cream". Which kind of particular preparation do you refer to with the word "gelato"? Thanks.

Teo

Teo

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We use gelato to refer to italian style icecream - that nice stretchy stuff.

We think of icecream as the hard-serve stuff you can scoop into a 3" sphere and it will hold its shape.

"You dont know everything in the world! You just know how to read!" -an ah-hah! moment for 6-yr old Miss O.

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A funny thing is, that my mom (from France) raised us on a butter heavy cream diet. I generally have no issue with adding fat! However, if I can I do prefer less fat. Think of how Gelato has more intense taste than ice cream, it is because the fat gets in the way of the flavor, it coats your tongue!

I will share my recipes as they become perfected, but not just yet, who knows, perhaps I will name my first vanilla "Jenni" :)

I don't know what kind of gelato you are eating but good versions definitely don't coat the tongue with fat as gelato has normally less fat than ice cream (10+% vs 7-8%). Another big difference is the overrun of both versions which is much higher with ice cream

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A funny thing is, that my mom (from France) raised us on a butter heavy cream diet. I generally have no issue with adding fat! However, if I can I do prefer less fat. Think of how Gelato has more intense taste than ice cream, it is because the fat gets in the way of the flavor, it coats your tongue!

I will share my recipes as they become perfected, but not just yet, who knows, perhaps I will name my first vanilla "Jenni" :)

I don't know what kind of gelato you are eating but good versions definitely don't coat the tongue with fat as gelato has normally less fat than ice cream (10+% vs 7-8%). Another big difference is the overrun of both versions which is much higher with ice cream

I think you misread what Rodi said, which is basically exactly what you have said.

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Jenni,

I have much interest in Kulfi, but have not made any yet to date. It intrigues and intimidates me.

Honkman, I would say it is both less fat and less overrun gives gelato the more intense flavor.

I would never use 2% milk as a substitute for whole milk, but I use skim mill for the solids. It always intrigued me to read premium ice cream labels that had skim milk in it, but it really does work.

My chocolate works amazing with the 1/3 HC, 1/3 WM, 1/3 SM, it is great.

I use 8 egg yolks in my vanilla per quart, cause I'm french :) and that is a tradition there.

My next ice cream conquest fruit flavored Philly.

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  • 4 months later...

I hope the original poster won't mind me jumping into his thread but I've got a similar problem but on a much smaller scale. I made the best coffee ice cream I've ever tasted anywhere thanks to the recipe in David Lebovitz' book 'The Perfect Scoop'. It's an egg custard using half/half cream/whole milk and it's divine; well at least it was before it froze like a veritable brick :huh:

On doing some reading of other threads here, yesterday I let it defrost fully in the fridge and re-churned it. I then (following Heston Blumenthal's suggestion) used the stick blender on it - I'm guessing this is to introduce even more air. Today it was possible to scoop it after only about 20 minutes in the fridge which is a LOT better than before the re-churning, but this might have something to do with the fact that less than 24 hours had elapsed.

At the end of the day, I'd just love to be able to make this ice cream scoopable (sorry, I made that word up but it fits perfectly) without waiting hours for it to be useable. On reading it looks like a stabiliser is the solution but there are so many products (agar agar, xantham gum, carageenan, etc. etc.) and I'm not sure if any one or all of them would do the job. Has anyone here any specific suggestion for a custard-based ice cream?

Belgian Blue

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At the end of the day, I'd just love to be able to make this ice cream scoopable (sorry, I made that word up but it fits perfectly) without waiting hours for it to be useable. On reading it looks like a stabiliser is the solution but there are so many products (agar agar, xantham gum, carageenan, etc. etc.) and I'm not sure if any one or all of them would do the job. Has anyone here any specific suggestion for a custard-based ice cream?

I have found myself in a similar place. Based on a great deal of searching this site, I have settled on a base formula something like:

1 1/2 cups heavy cream

1 1/2 cups whole milk

4 egg yolks

1 gram agar-agar

1 gram xanthan gum

sugar as appropriate to the flavor you are making

flavorings as appropriate

This is based on the recipe of paulraphael and many threads on the subject. I have used the above for a butterscotch ice cream, where the sugar and flavorings was about 3/4 cup of raw sugar cooked with some butter. The addition of the agar-agar and xanthan made a large difference in how scoopable it was. I used agar-agar instead of gelatin for the simple reason that I had it.

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Thank you very much - you have given me exactly the help I was looking for and the link to the PaulRaphael recipe looks very helpful also.

So now at last - a great ice cream I won't have to make my guests wait hours for :smile:

Belgian Blue

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Paulpegg upthread has corn syrup in his recipe. That's a big help in making scoopable ice cream since its hydroscopic qualities help prevent ice crystals from forming. Note: this is not high fructose corn syrup: you need regular corn syrup which also has a good amount of glucose, iirc. Unlike various gums and emulsifiers, corn syrup is on every supermarket's shelves: good old' Karo.

Bob Libkind aka "rlibkind"

Robert's Market Report

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At work we use a combination of sucroline and glucose, which to my understanding, gives a lower freeze point, and because of the sucroline (an invert sugar) you can add more glucose (this lowering the freeze point) without getting that horrible gummy texture that too much glucose gives to ice cream.

This just comes from conversations with the pastry chef, I'd love a little more insight.

James.

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If you're seriously interested in ice cream then also consider "Frozen Desserts", by Migoya.

It has a lot of technical information - this is a book aimed above your average home cook, it's aimed at professionals making small quantities. It deals with a lot of the different terminologies used and whether or not they're regulated - eg "ice cream" is defined and controlled, "gelato" is not. All sorts of ingredients, formulas, additives and techniques are discussed, and although the book is full of recipes it also has basic tables and ratios designed for commercial applications.

My only real disappointment with the book is that Migoya basically concludes that the best way to make small quantities of ice cream is with a pacojet, and as they cost more than my first car I won't be getting one anytime soon. But the photography is superb and the recipes are inspiring. If you're really serious about ice cream then this is a book for you.

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Paulpegg upthread has corn syrup in his recipe. That's a big help in making scoopable ice cream since its hydroscopic qualities help prevent ice crystals from forming. Note: this is not high fructose corn syrup: you need regular corn syrup which also has a good amount of glucose, iirc. Unlike various gums and emulsifiers, corn syrup is on every supermarket's shelves: good old' Karo.

That's my simple, untrained answer too. Regular supermarket corn syrup. Have never yet had a very hard unscoopable ice cream since the early ones. I also add a pinch of table salt.

I make a cornstarch based ice cream. Fewer calories. Cheaper. Less fuss. It may lack some of the creaminess of the egg base, but we are not ultimate ice cream aficionados I guess. Oh well...

Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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