Friday, March 11, 2005


REAL liquid nitrogen

Just for Cooter, here is an actual liquid nitrogen post. And I do need to try this sometime. It sounds delicious.

Liquid Nitrogen Ice Cream

We mixed up a standard ice cream recipe calling for two quarts of cream, sugar, eggs, vanilla and flavoring. (Just about any ice cream recipe and flavor will work.) Then, working in a well-ventilated area (lest the nitrogen displace oxygen from the air) and with due regard for the ability of liquid nitrogen to freeze body parts solid, we gently folded about two liters of nitrogen syrup directly into the cream, much as you would fold in egg whites.

The result, literally 30 seconds later, was a half-gallon of the best ice cream I'd ever tasted. The secret is in the rapid freezing. When cream is frozen by liquid nitrogen at -196°C, the ice crystals that give bad ice cream its grainy texture have no chance to form. Instead you get microcrystalline ice cream that is supremely smooth, creamy and light in texture. Martha Stewart, eat your heart out.

Mmmmmmm, definitely gonna have to try that. I especially like the "30 seconds" part because I have made ice cream using a crank and salt and it takes a while. I do love me a good ice cream social.

Now all I need is a good ice cream recipe and a dewar of liq. N2 from our lab and Voila! Yummy yummy ice cream.

Seeing as how it's the calm before the storm, I leave you with a light-hearted story of youth, theft, and M&Ms.

At my undergrad institution we noticed that sometimes as we were leaving the cafeteria the back way, that they would leave the door to their storage room open. Being a religiously affiliated university, you had to make your own fun, or commit your own fun as the case may be. So as we left dinner one evening, we decided to go in and take a look around. 5 lbs. of mayonnaise, 10 lbs. of pickles, cases of cartons of egg (yeah, nothing more weird than seeing someone pour a carton of yellow goo out and making scrambled eggs for ya) and a case of 3 lb. M&M bags, 5 actually. So not wanting to have mayo wrestling night or a pickle fest, we chose the chocolate with the thin candy shell. with a peanut inside.

So we make it back to our dorm room, this is freshman year and the freshman dorm is up the hill from the cafeteria, and open the box to divvy up the score and my roommate and I end up with 3 3 lb. bags of peanut M&Ms. The others were given to friends. The one bag I kept lasted for about 8 months. The other two were eaten but we barely made a dent in those 6 lbs. So one day, I threw a M&M out the window. We were on the 2nd floor above a grassy corner around the dorm. So we started throwing more of them out the window. So many that it changed the color of the grass. But we also noticed that squirrels would come around and eat them. So we continued tossing M&Ms out the window and feeding our squirrels. This continued for a couple days until we had emptied out the other two sacks of candy. A total of about 4-5 lbs. of peanut M&Ms was now on the lawn. But we also noticed that the squirrels had stopped coming. Maybe they figured out that candy is bad for you, until we saw one squirrel waddle out and grab some candy. So to those diabetic, overweight squirrels, I'm sorry.


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