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Homemade Gelato - and keeping it the correct temperature!

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

Hi everyone!


I'm new to this site, but definitely enjoying having a good look around!  


I have started making homemade gelato in my trusty ice cream maker, but what I am finding is that my gelato is the perfect consistency and level of hardness straight after it has been made, but when I put it into the freezer it turns too hard, more like ice cream.  I have played around with my freezer settings, as I know that gelato should be kept at warmer temperatures than ice cream, but even on the warmest setting my freezer freezes the gelato too hard.  So I was wondering if anyone has got any advice as to what I can do regarding this, can you buy freezers that maintain gelato at the perfect soft scoop consistency, or do you need to freeze it hard and then allow it to melt a bit?  Is there anything you can add to the mix to stop it freezing so hard?


Any replies would be very very welcome!


Thanks alot! 


Rhiannah xx

post #2 of 8

Probably not traditional with gelato but I use a shot of vodka when I make ice cream. The alcohol keeps it from getting quite so hard, but, really, you do have to just let it soften a bit if it's been in the freezer for more than a couple of hours.


Also, if you keep other things in your freezer you really don't want to be fiddling with it to make it warmer or you risk spoiling everything else that is in there that should be kept very frozen.

post #3 of 8

The vodka is a good suggestion.  Really, making ice cream or gelato in a home machine is difficult because it does tend to freeze quite hard.   I have found that certain recipes yield better results.  It's not gelato, but Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream book is geared towards home cooks.  I have also found mixes that incorporate a little sour cream, creme fraiche or sweetened condensed milk will keep a creamier consistency at home.  You can also increase the amount of sugar to make it softer.  

post #4 of 8

My suggestion would be to play around with the sugar ratio of the recipe.

I have had the same issue and found out through experimenting that less sugar will change Gelato consistency.

post #5 of 8
I let mine sit out for about 10-15 min
post #6 of 8

Sugar, works, alcohol works... Could also transfer it to the fridge 30 minutes before serving it. I have to do that to my peanut butter ice cream anyways.

post #7 of 8

Vanilla extract or even almond extract would work as well; their alcohol content will prevent the gelato from freezing into a rock hard state, and the taste will not be altered as much as it would be if you had added vodka. 

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post #8 of 8

You need a couple of tablespoons of vodka  to keep a quart from freezing too hard and you cannot taste it. You would need a flavor-altering amount of flavored extract to get anywhere near the amount of alcohol you need to do the trick. David Lebovitz suggests kirsch if it's a fruit flavored ice cream and champagne or rose if it's a fruit sorbet.


Here are some other tips for keeping ice cream softer from Lebovitz:



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