Ice cream preparation basics

Ice cream is delicious, creamy and refreshing - and therefore the perfect companion for warm summer days... or in combination with a warm fruit, chocolate or caramel sauce a real insider tip for the cold season.

Now, of course, there is the option of regularly going to the supermarket or dropping by your favorite ice cream parlor around the corner for timely supplies. But how about making ice cream yourself for once?

This is not only easy to do, but also a good idea for all allergy sufferers, calorie counters, those who like to experiment or those who want high-quality ingredients processed in their ice cream without superfluous additives. With what tools it works best at home? Here are a few basics.

Make your own ice cream with the ice cream machine

There are basically two different types of models: On the one hand, the ice machines with cooling container on the other hand, the variants with compressor.

The difference is that the cooling container of a 'simple' ice cream machine usually has to be pre-cooled in the freezer compartment for 12 to 24 hours before ice cream is made - and an ice cream machine with a compressor cools the mold itself.

This results in various advantages: Models with a refrigerated container are usually space-saving, quiet, and can be had for less than €100; examples with a compressor impress with the time they save and the possibility of preparing several varieties in one day.

However, the manufacturing process itself is the same for both types: The ingredients are evenly mixed together, placed in the cooling bowl and left to the machine to stir. Once the ice cream is ready (usually after a good half hour), you can enjoy the delicacy.

Make your own ice cream without an ice cream machine

Even without an appropriate technical device, you don't have to give up one ice cream or another, on the contrary: there are various basic ideas - classic ice cream, popsicles, parfait, sorbet or granité... which one would you like?

The classic ice cream consists of cream and milk (ratio 1:1), which are boiled with sugar. Then add the other desired ingredients and bind with egg. The whole thing is left to freeze in a bowl and stirred thoroughly at least every half hour for a nice consistency. The more often and thoroughly you stir, the smaller the ice crystals will become and the creaminess will increase.

Similarly simple works popsicleTo do this, fill the appropriate mass, for water ice also fruit juice or puree, into small plastic or silicone molds and put them in the freezer. As soon as the ice cream begins to freeze, insert sticks for later handling and wait at least four more hours until the ice cream is solid.

Another solution that is both practical and elegant is the parfait: due to its creamy consistency, which is based on creamy beaten egg and stiffly whipped cream, it does not need to be mixed during the freezing process like 'normal' ice cream. On the other hand, its melting texture is almost unbeatable - and it tastes particularly good if it is allowed to thaw a little before serving.

Fruity-fresh, because prepared without milk or cream, comes the sorbet. For a delicious dessert it is enough to puree some fruits with a little juice, mix with sugar and freeze for a few hours. Of course, to make the sorbet creamy, you should stir it at regular intervals. Again, the more frequent and thorough the stirring, the smaller and more pleasant the ice crystals will be. Granita (or granité), on the other hand, is characterized by larger ice crystals. It is coarser-grained than the sorbet, as its name (grano = grain) suggests.

However, with the exception of granita, popsicles, and parfait, all other ice creams benefit from the use of an ice cream maker. The consistency and creaminess are significantly improved by constantly scraping the ice crystals from the edge of the cooling container, as opposed to occasionally stirring by hand.

Bottom line: Make your own ice cream is not witchcraft, but with a little time and leisure a welcome change on the dessert menu!

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