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Homemade Ice Cream - Thickeners and Stabilizers


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Home Cooking Ice Cream

Homemade Ice Cream - Thickeners and Stabilizers

FelafelBoy | | Jun 3, 2012 03:45 AM

Desire to make ice cream with alternative ingredients to traditional ice cream sold in supermarkets with the ice cream maker I have (small appliance with bowl that needs to be prefrozen). I seek to use nondairy liquids, such as coconut, almond, rice, and soy (maybe hemp and flaxseed at a later time). With my research, I learned that a thickener and stabilizer is required, such as corn starch, guar gum, arrowroot, carrageenan, etc. For creaminess, an additional ingredient fat ingredient is recommended, such as a creamer (I'd use a coconut creamer or flaxseed oil). Since I would be using the nondairy liquid which comes in the aseptic boxes, do I need to add additional guar gum or carrageenan? I noticed that the coconut milk I have already has, along with many other ingredients (including organic evaporated cane juice), guar gum. The almond milk contains carrageenan. (The rice milk aseptically packaged version contains no guar gum or carageenan.) I do have a CAN of coconut milk which is a different creature than the aseptically packaged milk - it contains coconut milk, water, and crystaline cellulose (listed as a "stabilizer"). Do I need to add guar gum or arrowroot if I use this version of coconut milk? I'd prefer to do the simplest thing here - ideally, just pouring the cold liquid into the frozen ice cream container and turning it on - not having to make a thickenr slurry, then pouring that into the heated ice cream milk liquid mix (which already contains an additional stabilizer and conditioner). With posted reports of overly hardened and crystallized ice cream made from homemade ice cream makers, I understand the need for a stabilizer, conditioner, and adequate fat content. The coconut and almond liquids I have contain 5 and 2.5 grams of fat per cup, respectively. If needed, I could always add 1/4 cup of flaxseed or canola oil, or a little healthy nondairy creamer. (Is additional fat needed for these kinds of nondairy liquids for the listed fat content?) From what I have read, the healthier additive and stabilizer choices would be the arrowroot, arrowroot, or carrageenan. Due to the chemicals used to make corn starch, if I were to use starch, I might consider rice flour (assuming this would work?). Due to the rice milk not listing as an ingredient a stabilizer or thickener, I assume I would have to add one of these. I am not sure I would need to add a sweetener since these aseptically packaged nondairy liquids already contain sweeteners. I was considering adding either agave, honey, brown rice syrup, or raw sugar (or a less refined version such as Florida sugar crystals). My goal is to make an ice cream that still tastes good while using "healthier" ingredients. (I already make a version of ice cream using only frozen bananas and a small amount of fruit with no additional sweeteners. I wanted to now make a version that uses a nondairy liquid.) I am aware of the nondairy versions of ice cream sold in stores using rice, soy, and coconut milk. Would appreciate feedback on whether I need to use these thickeners, stabilizers, and which ones are recommended.