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Pumpkin Ice Cream Texture

Asked by Chris13. Answered on 6th March 2019

Full question

I made the Brandied Pumpkin Ice Cream but it had a bit of a gritty or grainy texture to it when frozen. I followed the recipe exactly as written. I used whipping cream which, in Canada, is 33% butter fat or 35% for organic. Definitely quite a bit less fat than double cream. Is this the reason? Although, the no-churn coffee ice cream was just fabulous using the whipping cream.

No-Churn Brandied Pumpkin Ice Cream
Photo by Keiko Oikawa
No-Churn Brandied Pumpkin Ice Cream
By Nigella
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Our answer

Nigella's No-Churn Brandied Pumpkin Ice Cream (from SIMPLY NIGELLA) is an easy no-churn ice cream made with canned pumpkin puree, sweetened condensed milk and double cream. The ice cream can be made with whipping cream as long as the fat content is 30% or more. If using a whipping cream alternative then you need to whip the cream before mixing it into the other ingredients.

We suspect that the graininess described may have come from the pumpkin rather than the type of cream. The sugar and alcohol in the ice cream will help to prevent the mixture from crystallising when frozen, even if the fat content is slightly lower. Some canned pumpkin purees can be slightly grainy and watery and this would affect the texture of the ice cream. Try to use a good quality brand that is fairly smooth and thick. Also we would mention that you should not use pumpkin puree that has been previously frozen as foods should not be thawed and re-frozen without cooking and also defrosted pumpkin puree can sometimes turn a bit grainy.

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