A few days ago we saw types of ice cream makers and their use at home, but for those of you who do not feel like buying another utensil for your kitchen, we also told you how to prepare homemade ice cream. Of course, preparing an ice cream at home is very easy, but achieving a creamy final result is not so much, so I want to explain how to make creamy homemade ice cream following some very simple guidelines.
The final consistency of an ice cream is determined by the size of the ice crystals it has and the proportion of syrup that covers them. The smaller the crystals, and the higher the ratio of liquid syrup and other ingredients to keep them separate, the softer the texture of the ice cream will be.
The size of the crystals and the proportion of syrup depend on the ingredients of the mixture we make, how it is frozen, and the temperature at which it is served.
Sugar, invert sugar, honey, or corn syrup. They are natural antifreeze, so the higher the proportion of sugar, the better its texture. The ideal would be not to exceed 18%, although invert sugar can be used up to 25%.
Alcohol. The alcohol has a low freezing point, lower than that of our domestic freezers so it is an ideal ingredient to avoid crystallization in ice creams. It can be used in a proportion of 20%.
Grease, such as egg yolks, cream, butter … Reduces the size of ice crystals and produces a lubricating effect, which gives a soft sensation in the mouth.
Milk powder. Provides the mixture with milk proteins and lactose. Lactose absorbs ten times its weight in water, which translates into less water in the mix, that is, less ice crystals. We will not add more than 10%.
Air. Although it is not an ingredient in itself, it is an important factor in achieving our goal. We must introduce air into the mix either with the manual shake or with an ice cream machine; or through any of the ingredients. Whipping the whites to the point of snow or the cream in a firm point are two very interesting options.
At this point we have to differentiate if the method of freezing the mixture is done with an ice cream maker or without it. Yes we use an ice cream maker the constant whipping of the cream causes air to be drawn into it, making the crystals smaller and the mixture lighter.
On the contrary, if we make the ice cream manually we will have to whip the cream ourselves every so often. During the first hour I recommend doing it every ten minutes. And in the following every thirty is enough.
The ideal temperature to serve ice cream is between -14 and -7 ºC. As home freezers do not have the proper characteristics or temperatures, it is advisable to remove the ice cream a few minutes before bringing it to the table. As soon as we serve all the necessary portions, we will immediately freeze the rest to avoid the formation of granules.
Also we can heat the ice cream tub a little in the microwave, for about 5 seconds. I’ve tried it several times and it works, although I don’t particularly like this method.
I have come to all these conclusions based on reading and experimenting in the kitchen. The first ice creams weren’t as good as I’d like until I discovered how to make creamy ice cream at home, with or without ice cream maker.
That is why I do not want you to be discouraged if you are starting to take your first steps in the ice cream world, since by following these tips in any recipe you have, you can enjoy the best artisan ice cream you have ever had.
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Directly to the Palate | How to prepare homemade ice cream without an ice cream maker
Directly to the Palate | Types of ice cream makers and their use at home