February 7, 2008 12:12 pm

Ice CreamForget hot cocoa — even in the dead of winter, InventHelp’s Invention Girl still craves one of her favorite deserts: ice cream.

As an ice cream enthusiast, imagine my surprise when I heard that a new type of antifreeze might be the new secret ingredient in the ice cream carton!

As we all know, one disadvantage of ice cream is that it often forms unappetizing ice crystals, which can ruin the ice cream’s rich, creamy texture.

The non-toxic antifreeze, made from a gelatin protein, could be added to any frozen food to prevent ice crystals from forming without otherwise affecting the food itself.

Previous attempts to make antifreeze for frozen foods relied on genetically modified ingredients, and have not been very effective. This is the first antifreeze made from natural ingredients, one researcher said.

Researchers extracted gelatin protein from cow hide and used it to make a compound called gelatin hydrolysate. When they prepared batches of ice cream made with and without the compound, those with the antifreeze developed significantly smaller and fewer ice crystals.

The question that researchers can’t answer at this point is how the antifreeze targets the ice crystals and not the ice cream itself, calling it the “million-dollar,” long-term research question.

It sounds like a pretty good deal…delicious ice cream with no ice crystals. InventHelp’s Invention Girl will be happy as soon as they start making it in Vanilla Fudge!

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