Homogenization of Mix
The mix is also homogenized, which forms the fat emulsion by breaking down or reducing the size of the fat globules found in milk or cream to less than 1 µ m. Two stage homogenization is usually preferred for ice cream mix. Clumping or clustering of the fat is reduced thereby producing a thinner, more rapidly whipped mix. Melt-down is also improved. Homogenization provides the following functions in ice cream manufacture:
- Reduces size of fat globules
- Increases surface area
- Forms membrane
- makes possible the use of butter, frozen cream, etc.
By helping to form the fat structure, it also has the following indirect effects:
- makes a smoother ice cream
- gives a greater apparent richness and palatability
- better air stability
- increases resistance to melting
Homogenization of the mix should take place at the pasteurizing temperature. The high temperature produces more efficient breaking up of the fat globules at any given pressure and also reduces fat clumping and the tendency to thick, heavy bodied mixes. No one pressure can be recommended that will give satisfactory results under all conditions. The higher the fat and total solids in the mix, the lower the pressure should be. If a two stage homogenizer is used, a pressure of 2000 - 2500 psi on the first stage and 500 - 1000 psi on the second stage should be satisfactory under most conditions. Two stage homogenization is usually preferred for ice cream mix. Clumping or clustering of the fat is reduced thereby producing a thinner, more rapidly whipped mix. Melt-down is also improved.