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Ten Tips for Great Ice Cream, From Kirsten Fox

Need some ice cream inspiration?

Once you have the perfect ice cream maker, you'll want to make a top-quality batch of ice cream. Follow these tips for most delicious frozen treat:


Ice Cream Recipes to Rave About

1. If you're making a quart of ice cream, put half a quart of base into the machine. Most ice cream makers produce 50% air, and if you put too much base in, you'll overwork the machine or your ice cream won't freeze all the way.

2. When working with fruit, add the base to the maker first and then, about two-thirds of the way in, add the fruit to the mixture. Sugar actually inhibits freezing, so if you add the fruit too soon, the sugars in it will slow down the process.

3. You can use sugar substitutes to make ice cream, but be cautious about the amount. Splenda, for example, is ten times as sweet as sugar. See the packaging to get the correct ratio or use the calculator at


4. Making low-fat ice cream is possible at home, but be warned that because the mixture isn't as thick, it may have an icier texture than store bought low-fats. Hauml;agen-Dazs and the like use special ingredients to get the right consistency. Generally, make fatter ice cream!

5. Another way to prevent icy ice cream: When your fruit-based recipe calls for simple syrup (equal parts sugar and water melted together), just put the sugar on the fruit and let it melt in the fruit's juices. This way you're not adding any extra water, which always results in an icier texture.

6. You can also change the consistency by substituting a half cup of milk and a half cup of buttermilk for a whole cup of milk. This won't change the taste and your ice cream will be creamier.

7. Always make sure your sugar is dissolved, because if it's not, ice will form around the sugar crystal.


8. When cooking a custard base, you must let it come to room temperature before putting in the refrigerator -- otherwise you risk fat globules. Yuck!

9. The standard custard recipe consists of cream, milk, egg yolk and sugar (see our recipe collection for one we recommend). You can keep a batch of this in the refrigerator for three to four days in an airtight container.

10. If you're using a compressor model, do not turn on the machine to let it "cool down" before putting stuff in. The machine won't work properly, and ice cream will end up very chunky.