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e407 Kappa Carrageenan in Ice Cream - Auxiliary but Essential Stabilizer
K- Carrageenan in Ice Cream
Currently, ice cream is loved by consumers for its smooth and delicate tissue, tight and soft shape, rich and long-lasting flavor, as well as its rich nutrition, and incredible taste.
1. Ice Cream Production Process
Ingredients → Sterilization → Homogenization → Cooling → Aging → Freezing → Forming → Hardening - Inspection → Finished Products
2. The Role and Types of Ice Cream Stabilizers
The stabilizers are the key structural substances in ice cream, which are the main substances to form the network of ice cream structure and overall layout.
The role of adding stabilizers to ice cream is as follows.
- Increase the viscosity of ice cream slurry
- Improve the dispersion of grease and grease containing solid particles
- Delaying the growth of ice crystals
- Improving the taste, internal structure, and appearance of ice cream
- Improving the dispersion stability and melting resistance of the ice cream system, etc.
At present, the most widely used ice cream stabilizers are xanthan gum, locust bean gum, guar gum, and CMC.
These stabilizers can be used alone or in combination, however, the ice creams produced with them as the main stabilizers have some defects such as poor taste and coarse ice crystals.
3. Kappa Carrageenan Properties
3.1 Viscosity Properties
The viscosity of 1.5% of refined kappa carrageenan solution was decreased by 8% when it was refrigerated at 2℃ for 15h, heated to 80℃, and then cooled to 30℃. The viscosity loss after freezing at -18 ℃ for 10 h and freeze-thaw treatment is about 10%. This freeze-thaw stability of carrageenan solution can ensure the freeze-thaw stability of ice cream products.
The kappa carrageenan solution is very stable in the pH range of 2-7, with a maximum value of 155 mPa.s and a minimum value of 151 mPa.s. The difference between the two is less than 3%.
In ice cream production, 0.2% of citric acid is added to create a sweet and sour taste, and the viscosity of the ingredients decreases slightly after the addition of citric acid, usually by no more than 5%. As the viscosity of guar gum solution is influenced by pH value, adding carrageenan as an auxiliary stabilizer can adjust the acid stability of the ingredients properly.
3.2 Gel Strength Properties
The size of the gel strength indicates the strength of the colloid's binding force to water. Gel strength has a significant effect on the conformability and hardness of ice cream.
The gel strength of 0.75% k-carrageenan was 450g/cm for water gel strength and 1280g/cm for salt gel strength. The gel strength of carrageenan decreases with the extension of heating time, but the decrease is not obvious.
In the production of ice cream, it is better to use high-temperature short-time sterilization to reduce the loss of gel strength.
4. Carrageenan in Ice Cream Products
4.1 Effect of carrageenan on the material liquid
As the amount of carrageenan increases, the pseudo-plasticity of the liquid becomes more and more obvious. In the production process of ice cream, the homogenization process has a strong shearing effect, and the solution can recover some viscosity after shearing and thinning, which is beneficial to the infusion process and molding process.
Although the amount of carrageenan in ice cream is small, the concentration change is not large, but the viscosity change is very obvious, so it can not be used as the main stabilizer, otherwise, it will cause the viscosity of too large defects.
4.2 Effect of carrageenan on the quality of finished products
Ice cream has a both fine and smooth taste, but also a sandy taste, these differences are caused by the size, shape, and distribution of ice crystals, and carrageenan as a thickening agent can provide viscosity resistance, limit molecular diffusion, inhibit migration of water molecules, prevent the growth of ice crystals, to prevent the rough structure of the product and improve the taste.
As the concentration of carrageenan changes, the expansion rate and the resistance to melting of the product are improved to different degrees. Carrageenan in ice cream also has a certain effect on the conformability of final products.
5. Conclusion- Carrageenan in Ice Cream, as an Auxiliary Stabilizer
Carrageenan is a typical colloid that can form a high-viscosity solution with certain thermal stability, acid stability, and suspension, but because of its strong viscosity, it is not suitable as the main stabilizer in ice cream production, but as an auxiliary stabilizer.
The addition of an appropriate amount of carrageenan can make up for the shortage of other main stabilizers, which can well control the rheology of ice cream slurry, improve the expansion rate and anti-melting properties of ice cream products, improve the taste of ice cream products, and inhibit the formation of coarse ice crystals.
The added amount of carrageenan in ice cream production should be controlled within 0.02%-0.04%, too little addition is likely to lead to rough structure, large ice crystals, and the product shape is hard to maintain for a long time, easy to syneresis and so on.
6. The Future Trends of China's Ice Cream and Ice-cream Market
A special survey conducted by China Market and Media Studies (CMMS) shows that the future trends of the ice cream and sorbet market in China are: seasonal consumption is gradually becoming shallow, joint venture brands are strengthening, and family consumption is emerging.
The seasonal consumption of ice cream, high-grade ice cream, and other cold casual foods is showing an obvious trend of fading, and the ice cream market capacity is gradually increasing.
There are more and more types of family ice cream, especially in the development of new products of foreign brands, and these brands often become the market development guide.
From the analysis of the survey data, the five brands most purchased by Chinese consumers are Yili, Mengniu, Wall's, Nestle, and Häagen-Dazs, which shows that the leading position of brands in the ice cream market seems to be unshakable in a short period.
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