10 Things you never knew about Ice Cream

With the hottest summer in a while in full swing, we thought we would give you some facts you never knew, you never knew about ice cream…

 

1. There was a life before Ice cream
Who Knew! Something we certainly can’t imagine.
Before the invention of ice cream as we know it today, Alexander the Great loved snow flavoured with honey and nectar.
With origins as early as 200BC, people in China enjoyed a dish of milk mixed with rice; frozen by packing it into snow.


2. Ice cream’s inventor is unclear.
Explorer Marco Polo is believed to have seen ice creams being made during his trip to China and introduced them to Italy in 13th Century.

Likewise, Catherine de Medici, an Italian noblewoman, is said to have introduced ice cream to the people of France when she married future King Henri II in 1553.

 

3. The waffle cone was created by accident

According to legend, an ice cream vendor at the World’s Fair in St. Louis had ran out of cardboard dishes on which to serve ice cream scoops, and so could not sell any more!
Next door was a Syrian waffle booth with unsuccessful sales. The waffle maker offered to make cones by rolling up his waffles and the new product sold surprisingly well!

 

 

4. Ice cream used to be considered a luxury
Before modern refrigeration, ice cream was a luxury reserved for special occasions! Ice was cut from lakes and ponds during the winter months and stored in holes in the ground, or in ice houses insulated by straw.
Many farmers and plantation owners cut and stored ice in the winter for use in the summer.

Here comes the science bit…

5. Why is it churned?
Adding air to ice cream improves its ability to absorb flavourings and helps to facilitate serving! Incorporating air into an emulsion of water, ice, milk protein and sugar forms a foam which is then frozen, giving dispersed ice crystals throughout the product.
In the composition of ice cream, ice crystals are of most importance as they give the end product a desirable mouth feel!

 

6. Now-a-days there is a science to the production…
Each component plays an important role within the production of ice cream.

Stabilizers- E.G., Gelatins/gums are either proteins or carbohydrates used within production to add viscosity and control ice crystallisation.
Over time, during frozen storage, ice crystals naturally migrate together and form larger crystals (you’ve probably seen this when you open an ice cream tub that’s been there a while).

 

7. Its all in the taste!
Professional ice cream taste-testers use special gold spoons. This allows the tester to taste the product with virtually no trace of flavour from previous products!

 

8. Who’s tasting these exactly?!
Recently, there’s been a surge in ice cream flavours out there! With avocado, ketchup and even mayonnaise catching our eye. Don’t worry, they are a little out there for us to start pairing with crumble at Dockside!

 

9. Let’s talk numbers…
One litre of ice cream contains around 15 scoops! (Although while writing this blog, we discovered our scoop at Dockside is slightly larger than average…you’re welcome!)
Additionally, a typical ice cream cone can be finished in 50 licks. YUM!

 

10. There’s more to life than ice cream?
Surely not!
What we mean to say is that with the increase in self-confessed “foodie” shoppers, products have developed massively.
From gelato (an Italian frozen dessert with lower fat content than ice cream),
frozen yogurt (exactly that containing even less fat but with a tarter flavour),
to sorbet (fruit puree made without dairy at all) …it feels like possibilities are endless.

The eagle eyed amongst you will have already seen one of our newest products from Northern Bloc, a tasty rice-based vegan alternative to ice cream! Believe us, its exceeded our expectations.

Lucky for us, it’s not essential to travel far for a tasty ice cream these days!
You don’t have to make your own, or save your stash for a special occasion (phew).

So savour the flavour next time you enjoy ice cream…. There’s been a lot of work gone into that scoop!

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