Thursday, 17 March 2011

Ice cream - aiming towards lactose-free

coffee icecream
Lactose intolerance is a common adjunct of coeliac disease, though for some people the healing of their villi means this is short-lived problem.  For lots of people, though, lactose intolerance is a permanent  issue.

OK, so we could just skip milk products, but there is a problem with the work 'just'.  Milk is in lots of foodstuffs (even medicines are bulked out with lactose - when I asked about a product to help deal with gluten-intolerance it turned out it had lactose in it. Duh!). Also, milk makes yummy foodstuffs.  Having spent a lifetime of puritanical foods as I was instinctively avoiding gluten and lactose, and adeptly producing erroneous reasons why, I now want to eat icecream, cheese, etc and enjoy them.

I found that pre-treating milk with lactase drops is very effective.  I can handle the residual small amounts of lactose.  Having made gratins and sauces and yogurt I moved onto fromage blanc successfully.  There were all made with whole jersey milk.  I pre-treated a carton of whipping cream  and used it to make ice-cream.   I simply added a little sugar and some strong espresso coffee and rum and put it in the ice-cream maker.

espresso icecream - texture
The icecream came out a little grainy (over mixed I think) and a little brittle (sugar syrup needed?). It tasted very good and I  will keep at the experiments.

However, I don't think the lactase had worked as well in the cream as in the milk.  I looked on the internet to see if there were any comments on cream and lactase.  All I found were other people asking the same question and no-one giving a competent answer.

I wrote to the people I bought the lactase from.  They simply repeated the milk-treatment instructions (why didn't they read the question!).  I have written to the company they buy the product from.  I await their answer.

Having accidental made an 'almost mozzarella' yesterday by making a sauce with the fromage blanc and over heating it I would like to have a go at making proper mozzarella.  The milk solids coagulated so I made a garlic and 'cheese' bread with one of ready-made pizza bases from the freezer.
almost mozzarella
I have found a supplier of all the kit and instructions and even courses.  I would like, first, to know if there is a interaction between fat levels and lactase effectiveness.

Aged cheeses have a lot less lactose than soft cheeses, so a little mature Parmesan is OK, and the cream cheese available in the stores is OK, but we do miss the entertainment a mozzarella gives to a pizza, and the summery fresh buffalo mozzarella with properly ripe tomatoes and basil.

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