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Learn how to make ice cream at home with tips from an expert

Homemade ice creams are one of the best ways to beat the heat. Albeit a little challenging to make, in this case, the taste of victory is surely sweet. The basic ingredients for homemade ice creams are icing sugar, condensed milk, whipped cream and any essence. If needed, any fruit pulp can be added as well and blended. However, in order to get the perfect taste and texture, here are a few tips you can keep in mind:

  • The smooth texture of ice cream is the result of good fat content in the dairy products that are used. Ensure you use whole milk or buffalo milk and double cream. Using low-fat products may give a gritty texture to the ice cream.
  • Add the ingredients in a thick-bottomed pan, and continuously whisk to prevent them from sticking to the bottom.
  • Condensed milk lends sweetness to the ice cream. Avoid using sugar if condensed milk is being added. As a natural alternative to sugar and condensed milk, you can also use palm sugar, jaggery, semi-dried figs or prunes which also lend their unique flavour to the ice cream.
  • If you are using fruit pulp, ensure that it is not added at the end. Most fruits are acidic in nature and adding them while whisking will ensure their water content is reduced. Chickoo is an ideal fruit to add as a pulp, as it has very low acidic content.
  • Add the essence or flavouring only when the ingredients have cooled down. Adding the essence when the ingredients are warm may hamper the flavour.
  • Freeze the ice cream bowl overnight to ensure proper freezing of your ice cream.
  • To prevent the formation of crystals, you can cover the container with a cling wrap. Also, freezing your ice cream in a shallow container will reduce the chances of crystal formation. Another way to prevent crystallisation is by adding a bit of alcohol to the ice cream.
  • If you are using fresh milk, the shelf life of the ice cream maybe three days. In case of pasteurised milk or tetra-pack milk, you can store the ice cream up to 90 days depending on the shelf life of the milk mentioned on the pack.
  • You can also use liquid nitrogen for flash freezing to ensure crystals are not formed.

(The author is the director — Food & Beverage, Clarks Exotica Convention Resort and Spa)

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