How to make ice cream by hand
You don’t need a fancy ice cream maker to make real ice cream at home. All you need are two metal bowls, a wooden spoon and lots of ice and salt to cool the cream mixture. This is a good summer activity for children. They can learn some science in the process. Ice contains latent heat and salt releases that heat. By adding salt to ice you can drive the temperature down well below minus ten degrees C. This is cold enough to freeze cream. To turn it into ice cream, just add muscle power.
Note: it is important not to get greedy. If you try to make too much ice cream at a time, it won’t work because the cream needs to touch the cold metal to freeze. Start with small amounts of cream mixture and you will be more successful.
The basic recipe is a 250 ml container of cream, a few drops of vanilla and 2-3 tablespoons of icing sugar depending on how sweet you want it. You can also add chocolate sauce or fresh fruits.
Getting the cream cold enough
For this step you need two metal bowls that nest one inside the other. Put the cream mix in the small bowl and set it aside. Fill the large bowl three-quarters full of ice and sprinkle liberally with salt. Quite paradoxically the salt melts the ice but releases the latent heat in the ice at the same time so the slushy mixture gets much colder than plain ice.
Salty ice can be used to keep beer or soft drinks cold in a cooler in summer. We are going to use it to freeze the cream mixture.
Nestle the small bowl in the larger one and begin stirring.
Now add muscle power
The key to fluffy ice cream as opposed to frozen cream is air in the mix. You have to stir and stir constantly and make sure that all the cream comes into regular contact with the sides of the metal bowl.
This step takes ten to fifteen minutes if your salty ice mix is cold enough and if you haven’t tried to freeze too much cream at a time.
Keep scraping the ice cream as it forms off the sides of the bowl. Another five minutes of stirring and you have the result: delicious home-made ice cream.
The key is the old adage: many hands make light work.Get your children to help with the stirring. What a great way to learn about releasing the latent heat of ice!