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Milk Solid Liquid Nitrogen Ice Cream

November 27, 2013

Molecular gastronomy is all the rage these days, with various restaurants and chefs using all sorts of new-agey modern techniques to create some traditional and new food favorites.  My husband and I count ourselves as one of those who have fallen in to the trap of being amazed by molecular gastronomy and enjoying some of the amazing edible creations that are produced using modern technology and philosophy.

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During some free time we had while we were in Bangkok, towards the tail end of our vacation, we found ourselves walking through Terminal 21.  Terminal 21 is a hip, relatively new shopping mall in the Sukhumvit neighborhood.  Luckily for us, it’s right across the street from our hotel, and actually connected to our hotel via elevated walkway.  On the ground floor, where a gourmet grocery store, as well as many desserts/sweets stands are located, we came across a booth called Milk Solid Liquid Nitrogen Ice Cream.  It’s ice cream, made from liquid nitrogen using the technique of molecular gastronomy.  You know we had to try it.

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The set up was simple and all contained in a small little booth being manned by one person.  There were 2 liquid nitrogen tanks that dominated the space.  On the counter was 2 standard KitchenAid mixers, the same kind I have at home.

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Off to the right, there was a dispenser holding three different fruit flavored juices.  This corresponded to the ice cream flavors available on the menu.

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Once you chose a flavor, the guy behind the counter would pour the appropriate flavored juice into a small measuring cup.  The liquid juice was then dumped into the bowl of a KitchenAid stand mixer.  Then liquid nitrogen was measured into a measuring cup.

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Once the right amount of liquid nitrogen found its way into the measuring cup, the liquid nitrogen and all of its icy cold smoke was poured directly into the stand mixer.  The mixer was turned on and the liquid nitrogen was incorporated and whipped into the flavored fruit juice.

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After a few minutes of mixing, the product inside the stand mixer was tested to see if it had solidified into ice cream.  If it wasn’t quite cold enough, a little bit more liquid nitrogen was added into the stand mixer and the mixer was set on high again.

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From start to finish, the whole process takes less than five minutes.  Liquid fruit juice, mixed with liquid nitrogen that is seriously cold causes the fruit juice to turn into ice cream in a matter of minutes.  The ice cream is scooped into a cup and served to the customer.

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Don’t call this an icy, this is more than just liquid turned into solid ice cream.  This really was creamy, delicious, smooth ice cream.  We were so impressed with this liquid nitrogen ice cream that after our first cup on our first day in Bangkok, we had had to go back the second day and get another cup!

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We loved the concept of this liquid nitrogen ice cream.  It was fun to watch them make it.  To think that you could go from a liquid fruit juice add some freezing cold liquid nitrogen, mix it all together in a standard KitchenAid stand mixer and the next thing you know, you have ice cream.  It’s like magic!  I absolutely loved it.  Sometimes this molecular gastronomy thing is so neat.

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