Ice cream and gelato manufacturers are required to produce products with a range of favours e.g. chocolate of approximately the same sweetness and hardness. This article provides an explanation of sweetness and how it is measured. Relative sweetness and the Potere Dolcificante method are discussed and calculations are used to explain the differences. The limitations and disadvantages of using numerical values of sweetness are explained. Since sweetness and hardness are closely related the reader is also referred to the article on controlling hardness, resistance to scooping.
- Written by Michael Mullan
Or compositional factors affecting the hardness of gelato or ice cream.
There is an extensive range of flavoured ice creams (Plate 1). On sampling there is frequently a marked difference in hardness between flavours, e.g. the chocolate flavour tending to be harder and the alcohol containing-ice cream softer than the vanilla or strawberry flavours.
While it is unclear how much the consumer in the UK or the US is concerned with differences in hardness between flavours, and batches of flavours, ice cream enthusiasts are and demand ice cream or gelato of consistent hardness.
Plate 1. Range of flavoured ice cream in a retail display cabinet in Naples, Italy.
In recent years there has been a significant increase in the number of specialist ice cream shops / parlours or gelateria. Many of these gelateria owners, particularly in continental Europe, require ice cream or gelato that is of consistent sweetness and resistance to scooping also called dipping in the U.S. or more simply hardness. Consequently food technologists should have a good understanding of how to formulate an ice cream mix to control the hardness and sweetness of the ice cream.
The hardness of ice cream can be controlled in two main ways, by adjusting the composition of the mix and / or by carefully controlling manufacture and the subsequent storage of the ice cream.
In this article we will explore how to use mix composition to control hardness of the ice cream. However, the serving temperature which influences the concentration of ice present needs to be considered also. The volume of air added during freezing (overrun) and the concentration of emulsifier can also affect hardness. However, these effects are generally less significant than the concentration of sweeteners used and are not discussed in this article. This article should be read in conjunction with the article on the sweetness of ice cream.
Freezing point depression
- Written by Lee Williams
Your ice cream recipe for success
So you want to start an ice cream and Gelato shop business?
The purpose of this article is to help anyone interested in starting their own ice cream business to get started. I am an artisan ice cream maker with extensive experience of industrial scale ice cream making. While I will discuss both artisanal or traditional and industrial or large scale ice cream manufacture, the main emphasis will be on artisanal production.
In the UK, Ice cream is a multi-million pound growth industry, generally recession proof and genuinely customer focused. When people buy ice cream it’s always a treat and often a celebration. As a Gelato-Artisan you’ll provide your customers with a product that brings them happiness. But you will need to put in long hours too, it’s common for owners to work until 10pm at night during the busy season, but in return you will unleash your inner creativity,growing your own lifestyle business, where your friends and family can surround you, and make a comfortable income in the process.
In Northern Europe and North America there is relatively little use made of whole milk powder (WMP) in commercial ice cream manufacture. However small scale ice cream or gelato manufacturers sometimes use these ingredients. In Vietnam and other Asian countries ice cream is frequently made from whole milk powder and cream. To the best of my knowledge there has been no information published on how to calculate the weights of cream and whole milk powder required to make ice cream mixes to a product specification. However the basic principles of mix calculation have been well described.
The aim of this tutorial is to explain the calculations required to determine the weight of cream and WMP in ice cream mixes. The significance of being able to undertake these calculations and an explanation of the concept of a balanced ice cream mix has been explained previously. We will start by first defining the mix specification that is required.
Instructions for using Subscription Service Ice Cream Mix calculator
Users must first log on to the calculator using the user name selected and the password that has been sent to your registration address by Email. If you can see the "log on" button as shown in the screen shot below you have not logged in!
Please log on to use the calculator. Note that from time to time minor changes will be made to the calculator, it may be some days before these are reflected in this user guide but any major changes will be noted as they take place.
The Dairy Science and Food Technology ice cream mix calculator uses linear programming to convert a mix formula or specification into a recipe.