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Cephalopunk

Ice Cream Machines

242 posts in this topic

I use it mostly on low speed, but toward the end I'll often crank it up to 3 or 4 for a couple of minutes, especially if I don't see any increase in volume. Low speed, vertical machines tend to give you very little overrun (ice cream jargon for volume increase from added air). I like dense, low-overrun ice creams, but sometimes my machine will go too far in that direction if used only on the lowest speed.

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Thanks.

I checked out my parents' old Simac ice cream maker which runs at -5 to -6 degrees, according to the infrared thermometer. I think I'll practice with that one awhile, even though the WS Cuisinart one is pretty cheap, because I've got no room in my freezer and can't adjust its temperature (apartment living). Interestingly, apparently you can't even return stuff to WS for store credit anymore without a receipt.

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Been researching for quite a while and I found for 220 US you can buy the Whynter sno Ice Cream Maker. It is identical to the Lello 4090 (rumors abound that they make the lello). I will be purchasing it soon.

I love ice cream and gelato and sorbetto, but I want a 2 quart machine. Has good Amazon reviews

http://www.amazon.com/Whynter-SNO-Ice-Cream-Maker/dp/B000V6Y7GG/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=home-garden&qid=1277827748&sr=8-1

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There was an article in some cooking mag recently on ice cream makers. I currently have the Cuisinart and agree with the article's assessment that the results are 'slightly icy, but acceptable'. For high fat ice creams it does just fine (but then simply freezing a high fat ice cream in a pan works nearly as well. You'll be very surprised by the results), but for gelato style (ie-- lower fat ice cream) and sorbets especially, the Cuisinart results are disappointing.

That's interesting. According to the Slate article somebody linked, if I'm reading it correctly, the reviewer actually came out with the opposite conclusion:

If you want to go gel canister and plan only to perfect Philly-style ice cream, this one's for you. However, the difference between this and a compressor model is very noticeable on French-style recipes. I started with a Cuisinart, and liked it a lot, but I also understood its limits in servicing my growing obsession.

Final Product: Philly, 8; French, 5

Has anybody else run into that problem with the Cuisinart?

If I am clear on your question, you are asking about a problem with 'the' Cuisinart? I have the little ICE-20 model, purchased second hand two years ago, and my only problems are that you have to refreeze the canister after each batch and that it makes only a small amount.

Yes, I was referring to the Cuisinart ICE-20, if anybody had encountered the same problems with french style ice cream as listed in the slate article.

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Aaccording to my guru's guruan ice cream scientist name Cesar Vega whose lecture I recently attendedthe ideal drawing temperature is -5°C / 23°F. He says he's flabbergasted when he asks pastry chefs their drawing temperature and they have no idea.

What exactly is the drawing temperature, and how is that relevant for the amatuer at home?

I've skimmed through some ice cream books, but I don't recall anybody mentioning that. What would be a good ice cream book that's more than just formulas, but also explains the process and all the key steps to making better ice cream? At the same time, I don't necessairly want a technical book that talks about stuff not relevant to making ice cream?

I've also noticed when looking through the different ice cream books is that they tend to repeat the same information, as if they all used the same reference without actually checking to see if their reference is correct.


Edited by mcohen (log)

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I don't think there's a type of ice cream that will favor one kind of machine over another. The most important factor is the time it takes to freeze the ice cream. Faster is better; if you can't freeze it fast, then you'll have to put more attention into stabilizing your mix in order to get smooth results.

In the Slate test, I noticed that the machines where you had to freeze something for a few hours ended up struggling with French Style Ice Cream while the machines with built in freezers didn't have as many problems with the issue. Perhaps, the problem is that the gel cannisters start to become warmer as soon as you take them out of the freezer whereas the machines with built in cannisters should be able to maintain that constant temperature? Maybe, constant cold temperature is more important for French style ice cream vs. Philly Style?

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Perhaps, the problem is that the gel cannisters start to become warmer as soon as you take them out of the freezer whereas the machines with built in cannisters should be able to maintain that constant temperature?

This would mostly have to do with the thermal capacity of the canister. The one I'm used to is pretty massive, so I don't have that issue, but possibly some smaller / lighter canisters would have limitations. You could compensate by making smaller batches of ice cream.

Simple Philly style ice cream is easier to freeze because there are fewer nonfat solids in the mix supressing the freezing point. The flip side of this is they tend to be hard as a brick at freezer temperatures. A properly balanced recipe, whether it has custard in it or not, should be the right texture for scooping at eating at around 9 or 10°F ... and any such recipe will place equal demands on an ice cream machine.

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Good to hear that Mitch's (weinoo) Lello ice cream machine sill works well. I purchased the Lello 4090 (2 quart) in 2007. Brought it out for ice cream making this season and it no longer produces ice cream in 40 minutes. Last batch took 3 hours. Still makes good ice cream just taking far too long.

Have any other Lello owners had problems after a few years of ownership or did I buy a lemon? Want to stay with a compressor style ice cream maker but trying to figure out if this one can be repaired and if can't be repaired, do I stick with Lello or buy from another manufacturer. Any advice?

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Has anybody been able to make ice cream at home that has the same texture and mouthfeel as ice cream from a store? I'm curious if its possible without all the emulsfiers that the professionals use.

And, going back to the compressors vs. gel cannisters debate, I've read more than one person comment about the differences to believe that compressors do produce a better ice cream.

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Has anybody been able to make ice cream at home that has the same texture and mouthfeel as ice cream from a store? I'm curious if its possible without all the emulsfiers that the professionals use.

Actually, I think I'm able to make ice cream at home that has better texture and mouthfeel than ice cream from a store.

And curls, so sorry to hear about your Lello. That sucks.


Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

mweinstein@eGstaff.org

Tasty Travails - My Blog

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... I purchased the Lello 4090 (2 quart) in 2007. Brought it out for ice cream making this season and it no longer produces ice cream in 40 minutes. Last batch took 3 hours. Still makes good ice cream just taking far too long.

... trying to figure out if this one can be repaired ... Any advice?

Sounds like the problem is with the cooling side of things.

One possibility is that (some to most of) the refrigerant has escaped.

Refilling it and sealing it OUGHT not to be a problem for a fridge/freezer/aircon repairer.

Worst case would likely be if the compressor itself wasn't compressing effectively. Repair should still be cheaper than a new machine, shouldn't it?

If replacement parts availability were to be a barrier to repair, would it make any sense to stay with the same brand?


Edited by dougal (log)

"If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch ... you must first invent the universe." - Carl Sagan

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Has anybody been able to make ice cream at home that has the same texture and mouthfeel as ice cream from a store? I'm curious if its possible without all the emulsfiers that the professionals use.

Sure. For one thing, there are no magical ingredients used in store-bought ice cream that you can't use in your own. For another, home made ice cream doesn't need to last for weeks in the freezer, so you face fewer challenges when formulating it.

And, going back to the compressors vs. gel cannisters debate, I've read more than one person comment about the differences to believe that compressors do produce a better ice cream.

Depends, depends. A very high end compressor machine will outdo anything. A cheap one may or may not be any good at all. Canister machines can be great or terrible, depending on the size of the canister and how cold you can get it.

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Thank you for the suggestions dougal. I have contacted Lello customer service and they gave me the phone number for repairs. Unfortunately there is only one repair center and it is in New Jersey (far enough away that I would have to ship the machine). They appear to be a small and possibly extremely disorganized shop... will try calling them again to see if I can get beyond being placed on hold and reach a person to talk about my ice cream machine problems.

Thought about bringing it to someone local but not sure they would look at it. The Lello is a sealed unit. Does not look like it is easy to service. But this is worth looking into.

Still checking into all the "easy" solutions. But based on my experiences with customer service and authorized repairs, I am leaning towards the compressor based Cuisinart model as a replacement. Unfortunately it has mixed reviews.

Thank goodness there is a fabulous gelato shop a few blocks away. :cool:

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I find myself in need of a new ice cream maker myself. Mine has an interesting problem.

I have one of those cheap gel-bowl Rivals that you can get at WallyWorld for $20. It actually makes surprisingly good sorbet. I used it for the first time in a few years last night to make a lemon berry sorbet (that needs a little water added due to to the flavor and sugar content being a little strong) and it worked like a champ except for one tiny problem: I had to stand there and hold the lid on because it wouldn't fasten down due to a bump on the bottom of the machine from the cooling gel expanding in that spot. Or, well, I think that's the reason. One can't really know. At the moment, I have it sitting in my deep freeze upside down to see if that helps. If it does, there will be some salted caramel deliciousness going on here tomorrow. If it doesn't...well, I'm going to need a new machine.

I've decided on the ICE-20 with an extra bowl or two. This is for a couple of reasons.

The ICE-30 is $30 more than the ICE-20. It makes half a quart more than the ICE-20 does. I could buy an extra bowl for the ICE-20 with the money I'd be saving, and I'd get, again, 1.5 quarts more capacity. Good for dinner parties where either want more than one flavor or even more of the one I'm using.

The second? My only real requirement for an ice cream machine is that it produces a reasonably textured product in a reasonable amount of time. This machine seems to do that, and quite well at that. Bells and whistles are nice, but ultimately unnecessary.

Saying this, I did look at the Kitchenaid attachment since it's David Lebovitz approved, but the extra cost just doesn't do it for me. Yeah, the stand alone machine means something else to store, but, again, I could purchase an extra bowl for the other one with the money I'm saving not buying the Kitchenaid.

All in all, I'm pretty happy with what I've decided. Just thought I'd share and thank those who shared as well in this thread. It's very informative. :)

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The current issue (Sept./Oct.) of Cook's Illustrated magazine has a sidebar equipment test of ice cream makers.

A brand call Whynter Sno has captured their cream of the crop. Listed at $220, certainly not an exorbitant price if it works as well as they say.

It's online here too.

My #1 reason for not wanting to even deal with a canister that needs to be frozen machine is simply lack of freezer space.


Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

mweinstein@eGstaff.org

Tasty Travails - My Blog

My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs

Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

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That's the one I've been trying to convince my husband that we need for next year. Both kids old enough to eat ice cream and such. Hm. May think about it more, then.

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Looking to buy a home ice cream maker, but I'm not sure what brand or type to use.

What are you guys using?

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For fun, we bought a Lello 1 quart ice cream maker from amazon about 3 years ago.We have had fun making granita, ice cream etc... it has served us well and has never disappointed. One tip though, when making ice cream it is best to chill (not freeze) all the ingredients you are going to add, that way it doesn't have a hard time freezing the mix. I would also buy extra quart containers so we can make several batches at a time.


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I purchased a brand-new Nemox Gelatissimo at a reduced price on eBay. The machine arrived yesterday, so with the mandatory waiting period for compressor machines, I'm making my first batch of ice cream. I've used the adapted recipe for Migoya's burnt milk gelato from Canelle et Vanille, with an added vanilla pod. The mix is cooling just now. I know it should ripen overnight, but I can't wait to try out the new machine.

I thought long and hard about which of the Nemox machines to get. The Gelato Pro 1700 would have been even nicer, but it has the same technical specifications (and even uses the same removable containers) with a much higher price. The Gelatissimo is no beauty, but not an eyesore either, so in the end I opted for the cheaper machine.

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I just ordered a Hamaltin Beach 4qt ice and salt machine. Couldn't see dealing with the hassle of the inserts.

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I just ordered a Hamaltin Beach 4qt ice and salt machine. Couldn't see dealing with the hassle of the inserts.

That's funny -- I just bought a Cuisinart 1.5 qt machine at Costco for $24 plus tax. Couldn't see dealing with the hassle of ice and salt :biggrin:


So we finish the eighteenth and he's gonna stiff me. And I say, "Hey, Lama, hey, how about a little something, you know, for the effort, you know." And he says, "Oh, uh, there won't be any money. But when you die, on your deathbed, you will receive total consciousness."

So I got that goin' for me, which is nice.

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As I think I noted way up in this topic, the ICE-20 works great for me.

This year I've been making soft fruit sherbets with success: 1-1/2 to 2 cups pureed fruit (before straining), 1/2 cup superfine sugar (I whiz regular granulated briefly in mini-processor), more or less depending on fruit sweetness, 1/3 to 1/2 cup regular (not high fructose) corn syrup, 1 cup whole milk or half & half.

The tart cherry sherbet I made last night came out tasty and smooth after a day's ripening in the freezer.


Bob Libkind aka "rlibkind"

Robert's Market Report

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Just saw this Cooks Illustrated article linked above.

I have no idea what they smoke over at that magazine. The findings are bizarre. The online version of the article, at least, makes no mention of their methodology but the results suggest that they don't know much about making ice cream.

They are recommending machines that take 60 minutes to spin a batch. I've never sampled ice cream that wasn't heavily stabilized that could stand up to such a slow freeze. It's physics-defying, not to mention inconvenient.

They report that the Kitchenaid attachment produces huge amounts of overrun. In my experience, one of the nicest features of this product is that the speed is variable. Between speed and recipe adjustments, I've been able to vary the overrun from zero to about 20%. Getting more should be possible, but their claim of 80% suggests something truly odd with their recipe. I don't even know how I'd do that deliberately.

At any rate, I would recommond against putting much stock in any findings from this article. At the very least, get a second or third opinion. And try to get a machine that will freeze a batch in 20 minutes or less. My last batch with the KA attachment took 6 minutes (1 quart, drawing temperature -5°C).


Edited by paulraphael (log)

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I have the Cuisinart that CI reviewed as 'highly recommended'. I can't complain with it at all.

The other one that they highly recommend which boasts the 60 min timer that Paul wonders about is a machine that does not need it's canister frozen. I would bet that it merely keeps things chilled before churning for the last 15 minutes. Why people would need to set for 60 minutes seems odd to me as well, but I can't see it churning for the whole time, that doesn't make much sense.

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