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Home Made Ice Cream (2013– )


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I did it, I did it, I did it.  After twelve hours hardening in the freezer.

 

As imputed to Alexander III:  "There is nothing impossible to him who will try."  And now there are no worlds left to conquer...save perchance strawberry or chocolate fudge.

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I haven't tried it yet, but the Blendtec, and especially with the Twister Jar, is supposed to make very smooth nut butters.

 

I wonder what a neutral oil would do, like Rice Bran oil.

 

 

 

I tried both.

 

You can get fine results if you use a powerful blender (like Thermomix for instance). Best choice is blending the gelato base in the blender, not only nuts (or nuts + oil). In this way it's much easier for the machine. I pour nuts + oil in the blender, cook the syrup (water + sugars + salt + stabilizers), pour the hot syrup in the blender and then turn on the machine. It must blend for some minutes, but you get a fine result even with difficult nuts like pistachios and peanuts.

 

About neutral oil, it works just like the original nut oil. Texture is almost the same, of course taste is a bit milder, but not that much different. If you use neutral oil with pistachios (instead of pistachio oil) you get quite a strong taste. The nuts ratio in this modernist version is higher than the one of the classic recipes.

 

 

 

Teo

Teo

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I don't have a blender to do the tests myself, but I am still trying to get my head around the contradiction that Modernist Cuisine says (from my memory) that even powerful blenders cannot produce smooth nut pastes.  Yet in this post nathanm says:  "A good commercial blender, like Vitamix or Blendtec, and/or for some recipes a hand blender like Baumix, will substitute most of the time."

 

http://forums.egullet.org/topic/136959-cooking-with-modernist-cuisine-part-1/?p=1787781

 

 

Though in context it is not clear to me* whether in that post he means "substitute for a colloid mill" or "substitute for a rotor-stator homogenizer".  As I answered Kerry above, rotor-stator homogenizers don't do much for hard biomaterials like nuts.  Nor are they designed to.

 

Also from my experience -- as I've complained before -- many vendors of "smooth" nut butters can't (or don't want to) produce truly smooth nut butters.

 

 

*Though after rereading the statement a few times I think nathanm means a "good commercial blender" can substitute for a rotor-stator homogenizer.  Has the technology changed much since Modernist Cuisine was written?  I would love to know his current thinking.

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Teo,

 

A strong taste of pistachios or the neutral oil?

 

 

A strong taste of pistachio. I used rice oil, which is almost flavorless. The resulting gelato had a strong pistachio flavor, much stronger than the classic recipes. It's quite obvious, since the pistachio ratio is higher and there are no milk nor cream (which tend to cover the taste of other ingredients). I suppose using pistachio oil would give a bit stronger pistachio taste, but not much: the majority of the aromatic compounds are included in the dry parts of the nuts, not in their oil.

For example I tried two versions of black sesame gelato, one with sesame oil and one with rice oil. You could notice there was a difference, but nothing big.

 

 

 

Teo

Teo

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I don't have a blender to do the tests myself, but I am still trying to get my head around the contradiction that Modernist Cuisine says (from my memory) that even powerful blenders cannot produce smooth nut pastes.  Yet in this post nathanm says:  "A good commercial blender, like Vitamix or Blendtec, and/or for some recipes a hand blender like Baumix, will substitute most of the time."

 

 

I can talk from experience, never tried to look for scientific explanations.

If you are trying to get nut pastes with home processors/blenders/whatever then it just depends on the kind of nuts. If you use hazelnuts or macadamias then you just need patience: run the machine for 4-5 minutes at full speed, stop it for about 10 minuts (to cool down the nuts), then repeat until you get a smooth paste. It can take 20-30 minutes of grinding, it depends on how well the blades are sharpened and the machine speed. If you use walnuts, then you need to add some oil, but you get a smooth result. With pistachios and peanuts there is no hope, you will end up with a grainy paste unless you add a boatload of oil (pistachios always need added oil). If you want a really smooth pistachio or peanut paste then you need to use a professional machine like a "refiner" (don't know the correct English name, it's the machine with 2 granite cylinders) or the other ones you mentioned.

 

But if you want to make gelato, then you can use to your advantage the fact that you can blend the whole gelato base, not only the nuts. If you blend the nuts with the hot syrup and the oil, then a home blender works fine. You just need to run it for 15-20 minutes, at the end your gelato base will be pretty smooth. You need to take advantage of all the water included in the recipe.

 

 

 

Teo

Teo

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If you want a really smooth pistachio or peanut paste then you need to use a professional machine like a "refiner" (don't know the correct English name, it's the machine with 2 granite cylinders) or the other ones you mentioned.

 

Is this the type of machine you mean?

 

Wet Grinder

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I use this wet grinder for making my own chocolate and also my own nut pastes. 

http://www.amazon.com/Premier-Wonder-Table-Grinder-110v/dp/B004OPIBV2

(well, I use the 220V version)

 

Very smooth pastes given it is fine enough to make smooth chocolate. They do work a bit better if you can have some of the nut oils released first (say in a blitzer/blender), then heat the stones in the machine and let it run for a few hours.

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Likely more like these?

 

 

Thanks, Kerry, I love appliances that don't take up counter space!

 

Some other options:

http://www.nutbuttergrinder.com/

http://www.amazon.com/Vertical-soybean-colloid-grinder-JML-120/dp/B00OVV0KE0

http://mill.globecore.com/solutions/food-industry/colloid-mill-for-peanut-butter.html

 

 

A thread on nut grinders here:

http://forums.egullet.org/topic/125668-nut-butterpaste-grinder/

 

 

If I thought a $470 mill would really make pastes smooth enough for gelato I might get one.  A bargain after pricing high end nut butters.

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My Sumeet - before it went tits up in the rhubarb patch - made a lovely smooth nut butter. Perhaps one of their newer spice grinders would work like this one.

 

But it will take up counter space!

Edited by Kerry Beal (log)
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New flavor today:  Apple Pie Ice Cream from the Ice Cream Geek's blog http://www.icecreamgeek.com/.%C2'> Brilliant.  We had it for lunch today and loved it.  Of course, I used my own ice cream base and subbed Granny Smith apples for the prescribed Delicious...which I don't like.   I did follow the directions which suggested adding xanthan gum to the mix, a first for me. 

Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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I too was pleased to see icecreamgeek back in operation!  Though I admit pie crust is not my thing, unless it happens to be underneath a pie.

 

The  current reading here is Van Leeuwen Artisan Ice Cream.

 

 

 

Edit:  how did you like the xanthan gum?

Edited by JoNorvelleWalker (log)
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Neither DH nor I could taste anything unusual in our ice cream, so I really have nothing to say about it.  The xanthan gum was certainly not fresh...and I didn't look it up for particulars...just made the stuff.  Mr. Geek suggested using it to keep the apple bits from getting icy...and they didn't get icy.  I was concerned about how the pie crust pieces might turn out in a frozen mix, but they did not get too hard at all.

 

Looked up Van Leeuwen Artisan Ice Cream.  Have you eaten their ice cream?  It's especially good?

 

August each year brings our Annual Dog Weekend for which I make 6 ice creams to be served.  I thought I might use the Apple Pie Ice Cream as a new flavor.  Otherwise my ice cream life seems very settled and I am not experimenting with new flavors very often.

Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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If you put enough xanthan gum in anything to taste it, the texture will have gotten unbearable long before that point.

 

It's a great ingredient in ice cream. If you overdo it, you can get too chewy a texture in the frozen state, and a slimy / jiggly texture in the molten state. I try to keep it under 0.5g per 1000g ice cream mix. At this level, it helps with ice crystals and with body, but there are no ill effects.

 

It works exceptionally well in conjunction with other stabilizing ingredients. For years I used it with gelatin, which I found to be a great combination. Now I use it with other gums. It works synergistically with guar, locust bean gum, carrageenans, and some others ... which means that if you use them in combination, you get a stronger effect than you'd expect based on how they work separately. This lets you use very small quantities, and balance the effects of each to your liking.. 

Notes from the underbelly

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Looked up Van Leeuwen Artisan Ice Cream.  Have you eaten their ice cream?  It's especially good?

 

Not sure if you mean eaten the ice cream Van Leeuwen sells or tried their recipes.  As of now, neither.  I question the philosophy of making ice cream like your grandparents enjoyed, but at least they call for lots of eggs and cream.

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I'm working on a stabilizer blend that may be the most effective and easiest to use yet. It's based on a cellulose gum ... specifically, a low-viscosity carboxymethylcellulose. You can get this stuff from Modernist Pantry or from the chef store at TIC gums. It has two properties that suggest it's in a class by itself: it's possibly the most effective hydrocolloid for suppressing ice crystal growth, and it has minimal effect on texture. This means you can use the quantity you need to prevent ice crystals without worrying much about other side effects. There aren't many ice cream ingredients you can say that about!

 

I'm going to use it in concert with locust bean gum, which suppresses ice crystals but also contributes to the body (especially the chewiness) to the frozen state, and lambda carrageenan, which mostly contributes to the creaminess and mouthfeel to the melted state.

 

These ingredients can be adjusted independently of each other, to fine tune the qualities. That's what's so unusual with this blend.

 

If you make ice cream with a lot of egg custard, or prefer a thin, Philly-style texture, skip the carrageenan. If you like your ice cream soft and yielding, skip the LBG. If you like chewy, New England-style ice cream, use more LBG (or add a bit of guar gum).

 

I think in a high-end recipe like mine (15% butterfat, 40% total solids) the total amount of all these stabilizers will be about 0.3%. Quite a bit lower than what you typically see in commercial ice cream.

 

I'm waiting for my CMC to show up and will experiment as soon as it gets here. 

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Notes from the underbelly

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Hi everyone,

 

After much trial and error, I've finally managed to upload a recipe for homemade lemon curd ice cream - http://icecreamscience.com/lemon-curd-ice-cream-recipe/.

 

I'd be forever grateful for any feedback if anyone does give the recipe a go.

 

Many thanks in advance,

 

Ruben

I have finally tried Ruben Porto's method for making ice cream at home as well as his recipe for lemon curd ice cream.  I was skeptical of the degree of detail, but I followed his instructions as closely as possible--no substitutions, no shortcuts.  I used the Cuisinart ICE-30BC.

 

First, I purchased a Thermoworks thermometer with probe and clip to hold the thermometer to the side of the pan (unlike the Thermapen, it doesn't keep shutting off at inopportune times).  I weighed everything and mixed exactly as Ruben specifies, although I did have to use an immersion blender to get the milk powder to dissolve, but the resulting foam disappeared quickly in the heating process.  I heated and stirred the mix for 25 minutes as specified.  I managed to keep the temp within a degree or so of the recommended temp by moving the pan on and off the heat slightly.  It did not look as if much evaporation had taken place, but when I weighed the pan + mix, the weight was quite close to the target.  About 5 minutes more cooking, and it was there.  I had the ice bath ready, cooled the mix down quickly, and put it in the fridge.  Then I went through a similar (but much quicker) procedure for the lemon curd.  A comment on the look of both:  They do not thicken much at all (as one expects, for example, crème anglaise to do).  Just a suggestion about the recipe: it might be helpful to tell this to the cook, as one is tempted to make the mix thicken.  But, it turns out, both mix and lemon curd thicken quite a lot as they cool.

 

Overnight I got the freezer down as low as it would go (-8 F/-22 C)  Several hours before churning in the Cuisinart, I used the "power freeze" mode of my Samsung to lower the temp to approximately -13F/-25C.  The power freezer function turns itself off after 2.5 hours, so it couldn't be left on overnight.  I didn't keep track, but churning took around 25 minutes.  I did my best to hold the dasher against the side of the bowl as Ruben specifies.  It wasn't really possible to eliminate all the buildup on the side, but I think I did minimize it.  The problem is that the bowl was so cold that it started freezing the mix the second I poured it in, so by the time I had put the mix container down, there was already a thin layer on the sides.  Aware of Ruben's cautions about taking too much time to get the finished ice cream into the freezer, I hurried as much as I could.  I decided to leave the thin layer of frozen mix on the side of the Cuisinart bowl rather than spend time scraping every bit of it; there wasn't a lot, so it was not as serious a loss of quantity as it might sound.  I kept the power freeze going until I was fairly certain the ice cream had hardened.

 

Now for the results:  It was by far the best ice cream I have ever made (in maybe 20 uses of the Cuisinart).  It has a creaminess I have rarely experienced in ice cream.  And the flavor and texture added by using lemon curd (as opposed to flavoring the mix with lemon juice and zest) are amazing.  The finished product does soften rather quickly once out of the freezer, but once this fact is known, it can be taken into account in the future.  I was apprehensive about using skim milk powder as I do not like the smell of dried milk at all, but there was no taste of it in the finished product.  I didn't know the fat content of the cream I used because, as is the case with most U.S. cream, it is not stated on the container, so I went with Ruben's minimum fat content recipe.  Would I use the recipe again?  Definitely.  It is a lot of work compared to the usual process and requires attention to detail that only an obsessive person would actually enjoy.  For anyone who cooks regularly, however, the extended heating time for the mix does not seem onerous (not much worse than making some caramels).  I want to try vanilla ice cream so that I can try to determine whether it is just the basic recipe and method that make the product so good--or perhaps the addition of lemon curd contributed a great deal to the extraordinary mouthfeel.  I think in future tries I will be much more relaxed since I know that (1) keeping the temp of the mix for 25-30 minutes is not as difficult as it sounds, (2) getting the freezer down to a low temp is actually possible, (3) moving the ice cream from dasher/bowl to the freezer in a timely way can be accomplished fairly easily.  A few final suggestions for the recipe:  It might be useful to state that about 8 large lemons were required to get the amounts called for, and it would help to list the ingredients in the order in which they are used.  But these are minor matters.  It is a great recipe, and I thank Ruben for it.

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Hi Jim!

I want to thank you for bringing a smile to this somewhat hideous face of mine. Your comments and feedback make the long nights writing up the recipes worth while.

Your feedback has been noted and I will edit the recipe when I get time to reflect the number of lemons needed.

Thank you for motivating me to keep going.

All the best,

Ruben

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 (2) getting the freezer down to a low temp is actually possible, 

 

This is important for any method. And it's one of the reasons my ice cream's been suffering. I moved to a place with an old fridge, and it's getting older. I can only get the freezer down to 0° to 4°F. At my old place I could get it to -5. These few degrees make a big difference. Consider that commercial ice cream goes into a blast freezer that's between -20 and -40.

 

I've been trying to compensate by using more effective stabilization, with mixed results.

Notes from the underbelly

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