Watch as liquid nitrogen instantly transforms a standard sugar and cream mixture into ice cream -- without any measurable time elapsing.
Read the full transcript »
Dr. Kiki Sanford: Hi, I am Dr. Kiki Sanford, and you are watching Food Science. Today we are going to be talking about liquid nitrogen. Nitrogen is normally a gas when it is around you here on earth. It is odorless, it is colorless, and it is mostly inert. It's a part of all of our tissues, it makes up -- it is a part of amino acids, which are building blocks for our proteins. So why am I talking about it on this show about food science? Well, because it is cool really, and I mean really cool. It's so cold that its boiling point is -320 degrees Fahrenheit. That's colder than the coldest day on the coldest place on earth, Antarctica, which by the way that was recorded at around -200 degrees Fahrenheit. So you're getting some kind of an idea of exactly how cold I am talking about. Now it's the good thing, and what's all the fun that we can have with something so cold? Well, it freezes things really quickly. You can take anything and get instant freezing, as opposed to putting it in your freezer, which I usually set at about -15 degrees Celsius. So we get a chance to take something and have instant gratification. So are you about ready for some of the creamiest ice cream ever? I know I am. What I am going to do, is mix together my ingredients, and then we will see what liquid nitrogen can do. I am taking four cups of heavy cream. You can use half and half if you don't like it so heavy, or even if you like light cream it will work also Then I am going to take a cup of sugar and a teaspoon of vanilla extract. Use my handy blender to mix all the ingredients. Now that that's mixed up, I am actually going to have a little bit more fun with this. I am going to take our basic vanilla and I am going to add some chocolate chips, and I am going to add a little bit of peppermint extract to give it that little extra kick Now for the nitrogen, remember safety first, so your gloves and goggles. I am going to take my goggles and protect my eyes, and get my gloves that's going to be handling my liquid nitrogen canister. It's just as easy as pour and stir. Pour it in a little at a time, and start your blenders. Mix it up as you go, the nitrogen is boiling this whole time, and what that's doing is aerating your mixture, so that you actually get a much creamier and fluffier ice cream than you would otherwise. Little more nitrogen, I feel like I am some kind of witch, cooking some kind of deadly posh potion. But instead, it is just ice cream everyone, and a little more freezing. I think that's about done. Nice mint chocolate chip ice cream that you can enjoy, all in a less than 20 minutes; less than five minutes, really. If your not so into the whole ice cream thing, there are a lot of other options. I myself enjoy really good strawberry sorbet, so I picked up these strawberries from a farmer's market. They are nice and fresh, and I am going to just take a bunch of these strawberries, put them into my Cuisinart here. Add a little bit of sugar to taste. You know, if you just like the taste of the strawberries to come through add less sugar, if you want more sweetness, add more sugar. And I also like to add a little bit of lime to my strawberry sorbet just to give it that extra zing. Add the lid and mix. You want to puree it really well so you have a nice smooth solution. Then we are going to take this, I am going to pour it into my bowl here. And then add my favorite ingredient, the nitrogen. The great thing about this is it usually takes a long time to freeze fruit with sugar in it in the freezer. So this is a much quicker solution to getting that sorbet, than you would normally get. You can always try blowing out the nitrogen gas that's rising as a steam to see what's going on, to see if you are missing any ice chunks. It's starting to slush much more. Yeh, oh that's looking good. I think that's pretty good for now. It's nice and solid; you have a nice little heft to it. It's not as liquidy anymore, and I think it's going to taste really go