Vanilla Bean Ice Cream Vs Vanilla Ice Cream – What’s the Difference?
When it comes to indulging in a bowl of ice cream, vanilla is a flavour that never goes out of style. But did you know that there are two types of vanilla ice cream available – vanilla bean and plain vanilla? So, what’s the difference between the two? Let’s take a closer look.
Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
As the name suggests, vanilla bean ice cream is made using actual vanilla beans. The beans are sourced from the vanilla orchid, which is native to Mexico but also grown in Madagascar, Tahiti and other tropical regions. The beans are expensive, but the intense flavour and aroma they provide make them a popular choice for gourmet ice cream.
To make vanilla bean ice cream, the scraped-out vanilla pods are placed into a pot of cream and heated until the flavours of the vanilla are infused into the liquid. The mixture is then cooled and refrigerated before being churned in an ice cream machine.
The result is a creamy, rich and luxurious ice cream with a strong vanilla flavour and a subtle speckling of black vanilla bean seeds throughout. The addition of the vanilla beans also provides a more complex taste profile, as the ice cream contains both the sweet, floral flavour of the inside of the bean and the musky, earthy notes of the outside.
Vanilla Ice Cream
Vanilla ice cream, on the other hand, is made using vanilla extract – a concentrated flavouring made from alcohol and vanilla beans. While vanilla extract is still made from actual vanilla beans, it generally contains fewer of the natural flavour compounds that give vanilla beans their unique taste and aroma.
To make vanilla ice cream, the vanilla extract is added to a pot of cream, milk and sugar, which is then heated until the sugar has dissolved and the milk and cream have been fully combined. The mixture is then cooled and refrigerated before being churned in an ice cream machine.
The resulting ice cream is sweet and creamy, with a milder and more one-dimensional vanilla flavour than vanilla bean ice cream. It does not contain any black vanilla bean speckles, as no vanilla beans are added to the mixture.
Which One is Better?
Both vanilla bean and vanilla ice cream have their own unique flavours and characteristics, making it difficult to determine which one is the “better” choice. However, if you’re looking for an ice cream with a stronger, more complex vanilla flavour and a luxurious texture, then vanilla bean ice cream is the way to go.
On the other hand, if you prefer a milder, sweeter flavour and don’t mind missing out on the speckled appearance, then vanilla ice cream is a perfectly acceptable option.
Moreover, it is also worth mentioning that vanilla bean ice cream can be a bit pricier than plain vanilla ice cream due to the cost of the beans. However, if you’re willing to pay a bit extra for a gourmet treat, then vanilla bean ice cream is definitely worth splurging on.
In conclusion, both vanilla bean and vanilla ice cream have their own distinct advantages and disadvantages. It all comes down to personal preference and what you’re looking for in a bowl of ice cream. Whether you prefer the speckled appearance and complex flavour of vanilla bean ice cream, or the sweet and creamy simplicity of plain vanilla ice cream, a scoop of either one is sure to satisfy your sweet tooth.