We are always wondering, what is the difference between a Gelato and Ice Cream?
Gelato is the Italian word for ice cream, However, there is a noticeable difference in terms of texture and taste.
All ice cream is consist of mostly water, and as we all know, water freezes and forms into ice crystals. The goal of ice cream making is keeping those crystals as small as possible through ingredients and technique.
Ice creams are generally heavy on cream and have a fat content of at least 10%.
Gelato uses more milk than cream, so it doesn’t have nearly as much fat. Ice creams are churned quickly to whip in plenty of air (which is helped by the high proportion of cream in the base. Most luxury ice creams have an overrun of around 25% which means they’ve increased the mix volume by 25%. Cheaper commercial versions can run from 50% to over 90%, which gives them a light, thin, fast-melting texture with less flavor as in reality you are eating mostly air!
Gelato has a more intense flavor than ice cream since it has less cold fat that coats the tongue and gets in the way of tasting things. Gelato’s flavors come through directly and quickly then melt away, leaving a clean mouth.
Gelato is best served at a slightly higher temperature than ice cream. If you freeze gelato really cold, it will become very hard. However, when it is ‘warmer’ it has a perfect soft consistency. If you stored ice cream at the same warmer temperature, it would melt and become watery as the high fat in water emulsion would melt too fast.
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