Balancing the mixture
Traditional gelato stands out for its creativity - being able to make your own, unique flavours without making clumsy mistakes that could compromise the flavour, appearance or consistency of the product. This work is called balancing the mixture.
In traditional gelato laboratories, the components of the raw materials are divided according to the official classification of goods, into: water, sugars, fats, non-fat milk solids and other solids.
The first ratio to be set is between water and solids.
We have found that water can represent a minimum of 60% and a maximum of 68% of the mixture. The solids in the mixture can therefore account for between 32% and 40%.
Regarding the other components, sugars can take up between 16% and 22%, fats between 3% and 12%, non-fat milk solids between 5% and 12% and other solids between 1% and 5%.
Advantages and disadvantages of some gelato components
|Sugars:||Make up the biggest source of solids: increase the body of the gelato||Lower the freezing point of the mixture. Lower the possibility of increasing the volume; sweetness is not always wanted.|
|Milk:||Liquid or powdered, it adds solids which are essential for the structure of the gelato. Adds fats, protein, vitamins, lactose; increases the volume of the mixture.||Can cause modifications in the structure of the gelato in storage; may be a source of bacteria if not properly pasteurised.|
|Fats:||Add body; allow for a large increase in volume without affecting the structure; they make the structure softer.||Can cause modifications in the structure of the gelato in storage; may be a source of bacteria if not properly pasteurised.|
|Eggs:||Increase the nutritional value; they contribute to making the structure smooth; they make the gelato softer.||The typical egg flavour may be unpleasant; the egg whites can cause foam; cost.|
|Emulsifying agents:||Emulsify fat particles in the watery phase; improve the texture.||Can incorporate more air than the gelato can hold according to its composition.|
|Thickening aggents:||Used to stabilise the mass, increasing its duration over time; make the structure smoother.||If used to excess, may cause the product to become too dense, making it difficult to whip; if too much, may cause the gelato structure to collapse.|
|Air:||An essential component of gelato; makes the structure soft; impossible to freeze, making the mass more resistant to changes in temperature.|