5.1 Ice Crystalline Products


  • To participate in making ice crystalline products with an ice cream freezer.
  • To recognize the effects of varying ingredients and procedures on ice crystal size in a frozen product.

Laboratory problems

  • Prepare still-frozen desserts.
  • Prepare churn-frozen ice cream and sherbet.
  • Compare laboratory prepared frozen desserts with commercially-prepared samples.


  • Sublimation= freezer burn.  Ice crystals form on the surface of food and lead to tough dry areas.


Apricot Mousse

½ tsp. unflavored gelatin 1 cup whipping cream
1½ tsp. water ¼ cup sugar
⅓ cup apricot puree dash salt

Soften gelatin in water in custard cup.  Set cup in hot water until gelatin dissolves.  Stir gelatin into puree.  Combine cream and salt in chilled bowl.  Beat cream until it begins to thicken.  Gradually add sugar and beat until it forms soft peaks.  Fold into apricot mixture.  Pour into 1 pint container, cover, label and freeze.

Mousse: Whipped cream, sweeteners, and flavors rich in fat and air, may contain gelatin.


Fruit Mousse

¾ tsp. gelatin ½ cup powdered sugar
3 tbsp. water 1 tbsp. lemon juice
1 cup crushed fruit 1 cup whipping cream
dash salt

Soak gelatin in 1 tbsp. cold water, then dissolve in 2 tbsp. boiling water.  Combine fruit, salt and sugar.  Add dissolved gelatin.  Chill 30 minutes and add lemon juice.  Beat whipping cream until thickened, but not stiff.  Fold into fruit and gelatin mixture.  Pour into 1 pint container, cover, label and freeze.


Cranberry Ice

3 cups water 2 cups cranberry juice cocktail
1½ cups sugar 1 tbsp. lemon juice
dash salt

Combine water, sugar, and salt; boil until sugar dissolves.  Cool; add cranberry and lemon juices.  Pour 2 cups into loaf pan, cover with foil, label and freeze.  Freeze the remainder using a electric ice cream freezer, directions below.


Prepare ice crystalline products with an ice cream freezer.

Directions for operation of electric ice cream freezer:

  1. Wash and rinse freezer can, dasher, and lid.
  2. Place cooled mixture into freezer can.  Fit in dasher and adjust cover.
  3. Place freezer can in outer container and adjust  before adding ice and salt.
  4. Using 1 part (volume) coarse rock salt to 6 parts crushed ice, distribute about 3 inches of ice in bottom of freezer; then add salt and ice in layers, packing ice and salt slightly higher than the level of mixture in the freezer can.
  5. Turn on ice cream mixer 20-30 minutes.
  6. Put mixture into 1 pint container, cover, label, freeze.


Vanilla Ice Cream

¾ cup half-and-half 1½ teaspoon vanilla
½ cup sugar 1½ cup whipping cream

Combine half-and-half, sugar and vanilla.  Stir until sugar dissolves.  Stir in whipping cream.  Freeze, using an electric ice cream freezer.


Orange Milk Sherbet

½ tsp. grated orange zest ⅔ cup orange juice
⅔ cup sugar 1 cup very cold milk
1 tbsp. fresh or frozen lemon juice

Stir together orange zest and sugar.  Add lemon and orange juices; stir until sugar dissolves.  Stir mixture gradually into milk.  If the milk curdles slightly, it will not affect the texture of the frozen sherbet.  Freeze in ice cream freezer, according to directions above.




Ice Cream:

contains nutritional sweeteners; must be at least 10% milk fat and 20% total milk solids or, if it contains bulky flavors (e.g. fruits), 8% milk fat and 16% total milk solids.  Weighs at least 4.5 pounds per gallon.


contains nutritional sweeteners; must be between 1 and 2% milk fat and between 2 and 5% total milk solids.  Weighs at least 6 pounds per gallon.

** Some regulations may not apply to products labeled “reduced calorie” or “light”.

Characteristics of the standard product:

Ice crystals in frozen desserts should be small; however, size may vary between products, depending on the identify of the interfering ingredients and the methods of preparation.  For example, the crystal size of an ice is expected to be considerably larger than that of a mousse.  A frozen desserts should have flavor typical of the product and a spoonable yet firm consistency.  It should be smooth rather than grainy, with body appropriate to the product.


Product Interfering Agents Appearance & Flavor Consistency (firmness) Texture (smoothness) Body (mouth feel)
Apricot Mousse
Fruit Mousse
Cranberry Ice, still-frozen
Cranberry Ice, hand cranked
Orange Sherbet
Vanilla Ice Cream
Commercial Vanilla Ice Cream (less expensive)
Frozen Yogurt
Commercial Sherbet
Refrozen Vanilla Ice Cream


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Basic Scientific Food Preparation Lab Manual Copyright © 2023 by Iowa State University Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.