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Sugar Infused Apple-Cinnamon Ice Cream

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Normally, fresh chunks of apple frozen in ice cream are as hard as a rock. But if you infuse them with a sugar solution, they remain soft and tasty. This sugar solution acts like a kind of anti-freeze because it has a lower freezing point than the apple (see graph below for the explanation).

This I'ble will show you how to achieve this. You will end with a subtle ice cream: at first you just taste the cinnamon, but once you bite trough a piece of apple, it's like suddenly a second flavor is released (apple).

The fastest way of infusing this sugar solution into apple is by using a vacuum chamber (look here for my previous Instructable). 
However, in the case of apple, there's a secret: you don't need vacuum, just a little bit more time!

Note 
It took me quite some time & effort to get this recipe right. I froze many batches of infused apple in which I varied: vacuum pressure, infusion temperature, time, sugar concentration and chunk size.
By coincidence I discovered that a reference sample that was merely soaked for a long period (without vacuum) showed nice results. It should be noted that this is true for apple. For more details on the process, see step 2 of this I'ble.

 
 
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Cymru3 years ago
Made this last night/today. The apples (Granny smith) stood in the sugar solution for approximately 12 hours. They were a bit more solid than I was expecting but not rock hard. More like fudge chunks in commercially made ice cream.  Also, they turned green. I did a double take as I had peeled the apple first.

I think it needs more cinnamon. Next time I'm going to add a tablespoon of cinnamon extract as well as the cinnamon sticks.  

I added the cream way too early because I didn't see it in the instructions until my fifth read through. But I cooked the milk, egg, sugar, cream solution very slowly to the 80C and it never separated.

Put it in the freezer to harden for about 6 hours. Firmed up quite nicely.

Thank you.
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bertus52x11 (author)  Cymru3 years ago
Great to hear someone tried this!
Soaking for 12 hours should be more than sufficient. What was the size of your chunks? That may have had some influence.
I don't have the experience with apple turning green. Maybe that's something to do with Granny (I have used Elstar).

Adding more Cinnamon is a matter of taste, and you know, you can't argue about that! ;-)

Are you using an ice machine or have you whipped the cream and froze it? 

The apple chunks were about 5mmx3mmx3mm.
Used my ice cream machine for the first time. The tub had been sitting in my freezer for a few years (I had gotten it on sale for $15 and just never found the time to actually use it.) Poured in the custard and let it churn for 20 minutes then poured in the apple chunks then let it churn again until the motor stalled. Scraped the ice cream in to a plastic tub, tucked that in the freezer until after supper.
bertus52x11 (author)  Cymru3 years ago
Sounds like you did it accordingly to the recipe. Did you manage to solve the sugar entirely? (no sugar residue on the bottom).
Do you know when the green color appeared (because I have never soaked for more than 4 hours).
Yup, dissolved the sugar completely. Had to heat the water to do so.
The apples turned green in the ice cream. They were white in the sugar syrup.
bertus52x11 (author)  Cymru3 years ago
In the ice cream !???
Did it look scary or was it somehow cool?
It was very cool. That's why we took a photo of it. ;-D My first thought was "But I thought I peeled the apples..."
bertus52x11 (author)  Cymru3 years ago
Oh, ok. I thought the whole thing was a dissapointment to you
If you choose to use plain sugar instead of brown sugar, you'll get green chunks in white ice. Something for Halloween?
zascecs3 years ago
 Looks good. I don't know if I missed this in the instructable, but does the sugar sweeten the apple up a lot? Because if you used an already sweeter apple, would it turn really sweet? If so, would granny smiths be a good apple to be used, since they aren't very sweet...?
bertus52x11 (author)  zascecs3 years ago
Good point (it's not in the I'ble). You should know that when you eat really cold food your taste is reduced. You can test this by letting an ice cream melt completely and then drink it. It's disgustingly sweet !
Same with apple. If you eat the chunks unfrozen, they're quite sweet. In the ice cream they're good.
I must admit, I have used Elstar apple (not sweet either) and the typical Elstar taste is somewhat lost but I'm not sure if that's the temperature or the infused sugar. One thing is sure though, it REALLY tastes like apple.
That makes sense. I guess another tip for this is: "Eat your ice cream fast..." 
bertus52x11 (author)  zascecs3 years ago
Yeah, but watch out for the Dreaded Ice Cream Headache! (here)

Unfortunately, I get these a lot. I tend to be a fast eater... 
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