Why is my ice cream hard ?

If you have ever made homemade ice cream, you must have made ice cream as hard as a brick right out of the freezer. And no other choice than waiting a certain time before hoping to be able to scoop.

An example with a recipe of a strawberry sorbet read in a book written by a profesionnal ice-cream maker. The author indicates that the sorbet must be removed from the freezer and placed in the refrigerator 20 minutes before serving.
Another example, on a well-known blog with a lot of ice-cream recipes. It is written that ice cream must be placed 40 minutes in the refrigerator or 20 minutes in the open air before serving it ! "Kids, do you want ice cream for dessert ? No problem, but you will have to wait 40 minutes ! " . Think also to the health risk of partially thawing / refreezing the product.

Imagine this situation in your favorite ice-cream shop with its dozens of ice-cream bins. A method will have to be found so that the employee can serve your ice cream immediately when you arrive without having his wrists broken at the end of the day.
Profesionnals have therefore defined the concept of "scoopability". And it is precisely what is called PAC.
So if it is possible at home to avoid or reduce these waiting times before service, let us go.

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Operating principles

On Ice Ice Daddy .com, the explanations will be simplified as much as possible. No complicated calculations, no mention of molar weight, curves ...

First, to have a good "scoopability", an ice cream must contain when served 75% of frozen water. It is the 25% of unfrozen water that gives to the ice creams its softness.
If the ice cream is served at an upper temperature, there will be more unfrozen water so the ice cream will be softer.
If the ice cream is served at a lower temperature, there will be less unfrozen water so the ice cream will be harder.
The objective is so to balance the recipe to reach this 75% of unfrozen water at the temperature where you will serve your ice cream.

How ? With the following experience. Water freezes at 0°C. If you add some sugar in the water, the mix will freeze at a temperature lower than 0°C.
For example, a mix with approximatively 18% of standard sugar (sucrose) will freeze at -1°C. And a mix with approximatively 18% of fructose will freeze at -2°C.

Here is the goal : controlling thanks to sugars combination the rate of unfrozen water and so the hardness/softness of the ice cream.

Is it difficult ?

Absolutely not. If you want to improve your recipes, you just need to get some specific sugars available in pastry shops and follow the recipes available on this site.
And if you want to take it a step further, Ice Ice Daddy .com free online balancing tool will do all the calculus for you.

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