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Has anyone else gotten rid of their ice cream maker?

Two years ago, I purchased an ice maker from WS, I believe it is a Cuisinart. It is the type that has bowl you keep in the freezer.

For two summers, I have made multiple batches of ice cream. I have no issue with how the machine performs. I like the final product but don't know if it is worth the effort.

My issue is with the time and effort required to produce a batch of ice cream.

If I want to have ice cream for Saturday, I need to start on Friday night. The time it takes to shop for ingredients (I don't keep cream, chocoalte, vanilla beans and such on hand), start the base, cool the base, run the machine, put the ice cream into the freezer (I like my ice cream frozen, not like soft serve) etc makes me think just grabbing a tub is easier.

Maybe I am lazy or maybe I just don't love ice cream enough. I also resent the amount of space the bowl takes up in the freezer. I am thinking of offering it to my aunt.

Anyone else have little love for their ice cream maker?

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  1. Mrs. Doc was ambitious a few years ago and got a unit like yours. She even ordered a second freezer bowl. After the first few weeks she lost interest. It was on a new years eve a few years back that I came upon I believe a chow tip. Use the freezer bowl to keep a batch of Margarita's chilled for a party without causing any dilution due to ice melting. Just make sure to use a plastic ladle so as not to scratch the bowl. The drinks were delicious for the duration of the blend. Even if you no longer make ice cream, keep the machine.

    1. Yup!

      Turns out ice cream is just one of those things I'd rather buy than make. And it did take up a lot of room for something I was only compelled to use twice. I got rid of my ice cream maker 15 years ago and have never looked back.

      1. I'm lazy to the point of never even buying one - if I want to make a frozen treat I just whack together semitfreddo or use an ice-crushing blender for instant sorbet/granita.

        1. For me, the problem was generating enough freezer space for the bowl. I would always have to rearrange the stuff in the freezer so I could put the bowl in there for a day or so. When I was done with a batch, I'd put the box of soft ice cream in the freezer in the same place where the bowl had been.

          Now, however, I just keep the bowl in the freezer all the time. When I generate enough freezer space to store a box of ice cream (I use those semi-disposable/reusable storage boxes from Ziploc or Glad), I'll whip up some ice cream base and put it in the fridge to cool. The next day, I run the ice cream maker, transfer and store the ice cream, wash the bowl before it's even completely warmed up, and pop it back into the freezer.

          (I've also found that it's a lot cheaper to buy cream in a half gallon carton from Costco than in a 1 pint carton from the grocery store.)

          MY problem is that Krups no longer makes this ice cream maker, nor makes parts for it. When the dasher breaks (I'm on my third now), I suspect I'll have to buy a different brand of ice cream maker.

          2 Replies
          1. re: ricepad

            I may have a replacement for you. Our bowl broke, and I noticed yesterday the motor is still in the cabinet. I presume the dasher is too.

            1. re: odkaty

              really? I'm interested...kusotare (at) juno(dot)com

              I'm interested in the motor and cover, too, if you still have those parts!

          2. While making chocolate or vanilla from scratch has an element of romance to it, I don't usually waste my time on those. I do enjoy making flavors that I can't readily purchase, especially sorbets (e.g mojito sorbet with blueberries). Also nice to add my own raspberries and blueberries to the mix when they start popping up (chocolate/raspberry has been a favorite combination of mine).

            1. I'm afraid I have the opposite opinion. Love having an ice cream maker! Ours broke, so we're going through withdrawl right now. I'm thinking of replacing it with a Kitchen Aid attachment so I don't have a motor to store. The bowl is simple — we have several freezers, so there's always a bit of space somewhere.

              1 Reply
              1. re: odkaty

                I have the Kitchenaid attachment and have been very happy with it - no thoughts of abandoning it! The sorbet of the week here is blackberry/tempranillo (a delicious experiment when we had no cabernet to add).

              2. Some of the problems you described can be resolved with a self-refrigerated unit. You don't have to freeze the core, you can make multiple batches without any downtime, and it doesn't take up space in your freezer). The downside is that it's bulky and expensive. And it certainly doesn't resolve the issue of the overnight cooldown of your cooked custard base.


                Mr Taster

                1. I bought a Rival ice cream maker with the freezer base a couple if years ago for $10 at a closeout type store. I made ice cream fairly frequently for a while. I then went on a diet and stopped using it for a couple of years. Then a couple of years ago I started making sorbet and and sherbet using fruit juice and milk, stuff we generally have on hand.

                  As an aside, last weekend I finally used the Play and Freeze Ice Cream Makers that I bought cheaply at Goodwill last year. http://www.icecreamrevolution.com/

                  The good news is that the ice cream (vanilla and salted caramel) turned out great. The bad news is that the kids (there were at least 10 kids ages 3 to 11 there) seemed to lose interest rather quickly, but only one kid complained about not getting an entire bowl of ice cream (they only make about a quart each).

                  1. Your problem is that you have the wrong ice cream maker.

                    Get a Musso Lussino, like me. No freezer bowls, no pre-cooling ingredients and no advance preparation at all required.

                    But in all seriousness, for me making ice cream is at least half the fun (eating it is the other half). Even without my fancy Musso Lussino maker, I would still make ice cream if meant using two concentrically sized coffee cans, some salt, and lots of shaking and kicking ...

                    6 Replies
                    1. re: ipsedixit

                      Think yer gonna need some ice in there somewhere, Ips....


                      1. re: ipsedixit

                        Really? No pre-cooling ingredients? Are you talking about taking your cooked custard base from the stove to the maker with a minimal cooldown? How does that work? Does it have a chill-down mode before it actually switches the freezer on?

                        Mr Taster

                        1. re: Mr Taster

                          Yes, really.

                          With my Musso machine, I just mix the ingredients, pop it into the machine and 30 minutes later I have ice cream. It's like magic, except it tastes so much better.

                          Read all about it here. http://www.mussolussino.co.uk/

                        2. re: ipsedixit

                          Damn that's a nice looking machine, Ipsedixit!

                          Mr. T, you can do a rapid chill on the custard base by putting the bowl of custard in an ice bath. Leaving it overnight can sometimes help the flavors come together, but as long as it's room temperature or below I've been able to get my Kitchen-Aid bowl to churn out ice cream with identical results to when I chill the base overnight.

                          1. re: cacio e pepe

                            I've recently taken to the trick of freezing a small quantity base in ice cube trays separate and apart from the refrigerator cooled batch. Then before churning, you stir in the ice cubes until they melt, thus super chilling the base. It still takes a few hours of waiting for the ice cream cubes to freeze solid, but it's not nearly as long as an overnight chill, and in fact I think it gets the base cooler this way.

                            Mr Taster

                          2. re: ipsedixit

                            I had several Cusinart-type ice cream makers - always the bowl in the freezer. I finally bit the bullet and bought a compressor type. I use bottle-topped off cream from a pesticide-free farm. But I've not made any this summer, as I've been too busy and have skipped quite a few pick-ups at the farm.

                            One of the differences I've found is that if I buy a good brand of ice cream at the market, I will eat and eat and never get really satisfied, always wanting to go back for more. But with my homemade icecream, one gets satisfied physically and psychologically.

                            It tastes of childhood.

                          3. It has found a new home!

                            If the homemade ice cream bug bites again, I will stay open to a better unit.

                            1. I agree, it can be a pain to create the custards, etc. I happened on a recipe in the yellow Gourmet book I have been playing around with for a while for cream cheese-based ice cream, and it is dangerously easy and quick to make. It's also possibly one of my favorite ice creams, period. http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                              1. I agree with everyone about all the pros and cons. Finally gave up making my own ice cream after 2 broken machines and 20-pound weight gain. Then I hit on a quick method: letting Hagen Daz vanilla ice cream soften a bit, then adding in my flavorings (candied ginger w/ grated fresh ginger; espresso coffee grounds, or whatever) and then refreezing - rave reviews from my guests and a lot less work.

                                1. I just got one, and I think I'll keep using it. It was a little Cuisinart, only 30 bucks at Costco, couldn't pass that up as I'd been thinking about it for a year or two. Have to freeze the bowl, but it's generally not a problem to have enough freezer room for it for us, and the small size is not a big deal either. Only two of us in the house.

                                  Here's the main reason I wanted it: most packaged ice cream is full of gums and stabilizers! Around here all I can get without gums is Haagen-Dazs or maybe, if I'm lucky, a hard to find variation of Turkey Hill that doesn't have that crap in. Of course, this created a new problem as I also found that in this area it's rather difficult to get heavy cream without carrageenan in it as well. But finding that is worth it so I can make my own flavors.

                                  I haven't bothered with cooked custards so there's no waiting for the base mixture to cool. I enjoy the simple initial recipe in the Cuisinart paperwork: a cup of milk, 2 cups of cream, 3/4 cup sugar (a little less, actually) and vanilla. First batches had Heath chips in them. Latest did a mint chocolate chip instead. I'm not sure I'm ever going to bother with a cooked recipe. Yes, it sets up a little nicer after a few extra hours in the freezer. Not a big deal to me.

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: CrazyOne

                                    Crazy One, you're in or near Pittsburgh, right? Where do you find carageenan-free cream?

                                    1. re: Jay F

                                      Whole Foods, that's the only place so far. I've heard Trader Joe's may have some but I haven't been since I started doing the ice cream. They are roughly equally inconvenient for me. ;-) Still looking to find some closer, just have to dig deeper vs the usual suspect stores. Guessing there's something, somewhere, that I just haven't had occasion to find before.

                                  2. After receiving it as a gift, I have never used it a single time, but I have found that the ice cold bucket is great for chilling a bottle of wine quickly.

                                    5 Replies
                                    1. re: la2tokyo

                                      Hah! That is exactly what is happening with mine right now. I took the base out of the freezer and put it and the unit in my car in anticipation of passing the unit along to my cousin. I stopped at the wine shop for a bottle and thought "hey, I will stick the wine in the base until I get home."

                                      1. re: cleobeach

                                        LOOOL My fiancee always puts in in the back seat with a bottle of white when we take wine to a restaurant. If we ever are ever given another one I hope that it fits the standard chardonnay bottle a little better, then it would be something we can really use on a regular basis!

                                        1. re: la2tokyo

                                          With the way the wine bottle will jostle around in the car, I think you're really taking a risk of damaging the interior of the freezer core. I'm careful with mine, and already it's showing signs of wear. It's important that the surface remain unblemished so that the ice cream continues to easily scrape off the side and doesn't get caught in dents and scratches.

                                          I'm not saying you couldn't get away with it a few times, but after a while I think it could ruin the core.

                                          Mr Taster

                                          1. re: Mr Taster

                                            I lined it with a hand towel and stabilized the bottle with a couple of foam rubber balls. (Yes, I had both a hand towel and foam rubber balls in the car. I have a 5 yo.) The rattling would have driven me bats.

                                            1. re: cleobeach

                                              I stick a soft gel-ice pack in it and the bottle doesn't move at all.

                                              "It's important that the surface remain unblemished so that the ice cream continues to easily scrape off the side and doesn't get caught in dents and scratches"
                                              ----> LOL Again, as my experience mimics the OP's: My freezer-core has never seen ice cream and I doubt it ever will, although I do tell myself every time I "use" it that I'm going to try and make ice cream in it one day.

                                    2. Somebody else posted something about using the frozen ice cream base unit to keep margaritas cold. Has anybody tried putting a pitcher of margaritas (mix plus tequila) into the ice cream maker and turning it on? We had one of those margarita buckets over the weekend but even after being in the freezer for about 15 hours it still was not frozen as much as we would have liked so once it was sitting outside, the slush melted fairly quickly.