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How to make soft sorbet?

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
One of my favourite things in life is ice-cream, but I recently had a baby and discovered the hard way (ie baby crying all night) that she cant tolerate dairy products, so ice-cream is off my list. Lucky one of my other favourite things is sorbet. Unfortunatly my baby has been diagnosed with several food al ergies, so I am now trying to make most things myself, including sorbet. Since I live in the tropics frozen desserts are on my list of must have quite regularly, but I'm having trouble getting a nice consistancy after I have frozen it in my home freezer. It always goes rock hard in 24 hrs and gets very icy. I have tried several different recipes, but have not had much success. I've also tried the take it out of the freezer a few mins before hand, but this doesnt help the icy situation.
Can anyone help a tired and hungry Mum??:)
post #2 of 19
Increase the sugar content a little. The higher the sugar content, the softer the sorbet is. Also for fruit sorbets try and include as much fruit pulp/puree as possible, this will also make it softer.
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post #3 of 19
Softness in ice cream (and sorbet) comes from a few factors.

Freezing Point Depression

Sugar, whether it be white granulated or the naturally occuring sugars in the fruit, lowers the freezing point of the mixture. The lower the freezing point, the softer the ice cream. Add more sugar.

Air/Overrun

The more air ice cream/sherbet contains, the less dense it is, the easier it is to scoop. Air can be obtain through mechanical processes (such as whipping the ice cream base beforehand) and/or utilizing ingredients that add viscosity/bubble formation. Heavy cream has the chemistry to incorporate a lot of air. Fruit puree, not so much. You need to add ingredients to your puree that will allow it to become more viscous/hold more air.

Vegetable gums (such as xanthan or guar) are popular for this purpose.
post #4 of 19
I assume you are using a machine. Scott has all the technical,chemisrty etc. answers for you. I'm curious about the proceedure of the formula. There are some cold - freeze formulas and some hot - freeze. I have found it best to always use a cooked sugar like simple syrup or such.
There are a couple of very good icream and sorbet additives to meet individual needs. I would be happy to find a distributor for you if interested. Most are from Italy. They are formula and put in tooth-brush type applicators. Easy to use. Do your homework if you are going to add anything but sugar or base ingredients. Make sure there's nothing in there that will affect the little one.
pan
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post #5 of 19
Mom,
Just wanted to post this for ya.
http://www.chefrubber.com/Shopping/shopexd.asp?id=1069
I use this company frequently
pan
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post #6 of 19

Soft Sorbets

The suggestions in previous postings are right on from our experience (we make a lot of sorbets with summer fruit). More sugar and something, like fruit pulp, to help incorporate air in the processing. When we have a sorbet made from something that naturally has little pulp (like a lime and sage sorbet we make as a palate cleanser), we will add a beaten egg white or two. However, you might want to be cautious in using raw eggs in a preparation intended for an infant.
post #7 of 19

sorbets

I'm having the same problem with a carrot sorbet I made. My solution was to add vodka and lower the freezing point, but I think that might produce a drunken baby.
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post #8 of 19
Welcome, sbwannabe! From the way you described what happens, I'm guessing that you're not using an ice-cream machine, but just making the liquid mixture, pouring it into a pan, and sticking the pan into your freezer. That will indeed give you a rock-hard slab of ice. :eek: Treat it like granita -- stir it up with a fork every half hour to an hour while it's freezing -- and while it will still be icy, it won't be rock hard.

If you can get pasteurized egg whites (refrigerated liquid, in a small carton), those will work in place of fresh, unpasteurized ones.

And do everything else everyone else has already said! :D Well, maybe not the vodka . . . :look: ;)
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post #9 of 19
try Trimouline(inverted sugar) works great for those sorbet and gelatos that would normaly be icy, And buy a paco jet...
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post #10 of 19

Invert Sugar for Sorbets

I learn something new from this group every day. While I knew about invert sugar in candy making, I never had heard about it for sorbets. Of course it makes sense.

If you're searching for invert sugar under its trade name, be aware that it can be spelled Trimouline (as above) or (more often in the U.S.) Trimoline.

I usually sweeten my sorbet mixtures "to taste" (I prefer to add a bit of lemon juice to most fruit sorbet mixes and then use a bit extra sugar), but does anyone know what the substitution amount is?

By the way, if you can't find invert sugar syrup or don't want to order it, you can make your own (actually something close to what's sold as "Golden Syrup", a partially invert sugar product). Make a standard sugar syrup, but add about a gram of either ascorbic acid (vitamin C) or citric acid (the acid that gives citrus fruits their tartness) per kilo of sugar. You will need to boil the syrup for about 20 minutes to achieve the conversion.

The process splits normal sugar (sucrose) into equal parts glucose and fructose (two other naturally occuring sugars). Commercially, this is done with enzymes.

The result is that you get two "sugar" molecules where you had one, resulting in what's called freezing point depression (the same way salt tossed on your walk melts ice). Plus (and this is important in candy-making) the mixture of sugars has a lower melting point than the two sugars themselves and is less likely to crystallize.

Ain't science wonderful--especially when you can eat it.
post #11 of 19
Hi JonK,
I too have used invert in formulas. I'm not sure on anything, for my mind is burping quite a bit lately(age).
If you were making a fruit sorbet, when you mix the fruit with the sugar and heat it, your sugar will invert automatically because of the acid in the fruit. No?The result from inverting makes the sugar crystals are smaller.
The reason I did not suggest the invert sugar was because I think, the commercial products use a yeast enzyme. Like I said, don't hold me to this.
I didn't know if the baby would tolerate it. I suggested the stabilizer because most are made using gums.
So I guess there is a couple of ways to go. I understand the lower freeze point but does that change the actions of the product after freezing? Ya know, after it is scooped and in your dish. I've always thought the the stabilizer would help in the shelf life after scooped. Like melting, a creamier melted product as opposed to a clear loose melt.
I might be all wet. I hope someone will have something to add. JonK, like I said, I'm not disagreeing with anything, just would like to learn more. I'm overwhelmed most times by science. That's why I love this board, we have scientist, chemists, biologists etc. here.
pan
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post #12 of 19
sbwannabe, Just in case you didn't know invert sugar = corn syrup (You can also play around with honey, maple syrup, or even molassas but watch the flavors) You can replace up to 25% of the sugar in the recipe with corn syrup.

You can also add some jam or jelly to the mix. The added pectin and bulk matter contribute to the smoothness. (see The New Making of A Cook for more details on this method. You will need to remove some of the sugar if you due add jam. I suspect you could even melt some quince paste/membrillo in some water and add it to the mix if the flavors work.
post #13 of 19
A couple of comments on the posts above:

1. Though corn syrup is made by similar processes for those used to make invert sugar syrup (hydrolysis or "breaking apart by adding water" via either enzymes or acids), the two sweeteners are not the same.

Corn syrup starts from corn (duh!) or other starches (potato starch will work) and results in the splitting of the long starch chain which is composed of glucose molecules into individual glucose molecules and some of a two-sugar fragment, maltose, as well as less sweet bigger fragments.

Invert sugar, on the other hand, comes from splitting sucrose (a two-fragment sugar. sometimes referred to as a disacchride) into about equal proportions of glucose and fructose.

Corn syrup can vary in sweetness depending how complete the hydrolysis is. (Dark corn syrup has a little refiner's sugar added, the liquid that remains after processing sugar cane or sugar beets.)

2. That said, corn syrup can work like invert syrup in candy making, though I'm sure there must be subtle technical issues I'm not aware of as candy makers often use the more expensive invert syrup. We've used a bit of corn syrup in making brittles, for example, to inhibit crystallization.

3. Panini asks whether sugar will automatically convert to invert sugar when you heat it with fruit in the sorbet making. Some of it certainly will, but the process takes a while, especially at acid levels that are palatable. I prefer to make the sugar syrup first, then blend it with the fruit to taste, so I can't give you any personal experience here. As I said in my first post, I've not tried invert syrup in sorbet making, but I will the next time.

4. I don't know the answer to Panini's other question and can't find a quick one in my reference books (do either Ben or Jerry read these threads?). Certainly, the invert sugar could create a softer product by keeping the freezing point lower, but whether the balance of sugars and the curing temperature in the freezer are at the right point to have a real effect, I don't know. Invert syrup will not crystallize itself, but according to folks like McGee the main tactile crystallization in ice cream at least is from ice crystals (and lactose, which won't be in a sorbet), not the sugars. As I noted earlier, our main techniques for keeping sorbets scoopable have been fruit pulp and when that's not appropriate, an egg white or two.

By the way, Panini, my dear late father, a chemical engineer by training, used say that cooking was nothing more than applied chemical engineering. Alas for that theory, he wasn't a very good cook.
post #14 of 19
JonK,
Thank you for taking the time to post. You're right. I rarely cook any fruit when making my syrup. I'm usually lazy and just use a prepared puree at maybe 5% sugar, add my simple or other syrup and go. Lemon and grapefruit are the only ones I cook zest in, when making syrup.
I'll spend some time and see what the gums do.
sbwannabe,
Are you still with us? Have you gotten any help?
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post #15 of 19
I discovered (from Wikipedia, so take it as you wish) that in place of Trimoline you can use Lyle's Golden Syrup. I'd rather use that than regular corn syrup, just because I like the flavor better. Then again, when I used to make sorbets at a restaurant, the proportion of Trimoline to everything else was usually pretty small.

Get a PacoJet? :lol: :lol:
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post #16 of 19
Thanks for the info Jonk. I guess I've been substiting corn syrup for glucose and inverts for so long they just seemed equal.

Just to add little more on corn syrup:

The medium weight sachrides from cornsyrup add to the "chewiness" and body of ice creams and sorbet (Low and non fat ice creams use high weight cornsyrup solids (dextrins) to add the body lost from fat). They also protect against heat shock and iciness during storage. Cornsyrup that is used by icecream manufacturers has a dextrose equivilent of 24 to 42.

Reference: Ice Cream 6th Edition.

Jeez, I hope I can keep up with all you smart people...
post #17 of 19
TinCook, thanks for the additional insights and the very interesting reference. Alas, at $89.95, I probably won't be adding that book to my collection soon (the sigh you hear is my wife, thankful that yet another cookbook won't be sneaking into the house). But I will see if our library can borrow a copy. So much to learn...
post #18 of 19
I won't pretend to be any sort of substitute for Ben or Jerry, but I do have their, Homemade IceCream and Dessert Book, and can share some of their comments on: Ice Crystals - ice cream is always going to have ice crystals, "the idea is to make them so small that they will not be detectable on the tongue. The faster you freeze your mix, the smaller the ice crystals will be and the smoother and creamier the ice cream will taste." Liqueur - "Alcohol depresses the freezing point of ice cream. Therefore, when you add a liqueur to your basic mix, it will always take longer to freeze and the finished ice cream will always be softer than other ice creams." They go on to say one must be careful not to use too much alcohol.

That said, 5 out of 7 of their sorbet recipes have alcohol in them. Also, 5 out of 7 of their sorbets contain sugar and corn syrup
post #19 of 19

ok, after a long summer of trying different recipies, i found that my lemonnever got rock hard in the frezzer even after a few weeks....

my im working on the assumption that there were only two things that made it less hard than the others.  1) sugar content, just like most of you all said this helped make all the recipes i tried a little softer. 2) citric acid in the mixture.  

   What im doing now is trying to quantify how much sugar should be there to keep it soft, im trying to stay at 2 cups per batch, for a batch near 1 1/2 qt. This is the ratio of the almost every lemon recipe i've seen.

   Im making a batch of pineapple right now, this was my approach: 1 cup sugar is approx 196 grams, So i took 1 1/2 cups sugar in 1 cup of water, added 3 cups of pineapple juice.  Im using juice for the sake of the experiment, not real fruit....also b/c the lemon is just juice with little pulp.....anyway, the nutritional lable on the can of juice says 1 cup has 32 grams of sugar, so theres 94 grams of sugar by the fruit juice, and 1.5 cup sugar = 294 grams, so my total sugar is gonna be 390 grams, where 2 cups sugar would be 392..

 

Hopefully this works out, and i can apply this to other fruit juices, and then that to what works with whole fruit...it was really helpful using the juice to get the nutritional info off the lable too

i'll post my results in a few days after its been in the freezer a while

 

Any thoughts??

 

 

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