IT’S freezing – but not as we know it.
Local chefs Craig McDonald and David Clokey have turned scientists to come up with a novel ice-cream.
They unveiled their skills at Mirfield Show and plan to repeat it in the kitchens of The Gray Ox, the Hartshead pub where both work.
The secret to making the ice-cream was liquid nitrogen.
The pair poured the dangerous coolant – a liquid between minus 210°C and minus 196°C at atmospheric pressure – into a mixing bowl of ice-cream mix.
Tendrils of vapour wafted from the bowl as the liquid nitrogen reacted with the air.
And in just under a minute, visitors to the show were able to sample the cool gastronomic delight.
Head chef Craig told the Examiner: “We had lots of people interested and asking us how it was done and whether or not we used these techniques at the pub.
“We’re a traditional pub and we use traditional methods, but we have some evenings where we like to do things a little bit differently.”
Craig and David took inspiration from celebrity chef Heston Blumenthal for the ice-cream.
Craig, who was a chef in a Leeds restaurant before taking over as head chef at the Gray Ox, said: “The liquid nitrogen is about -190°C so you have to be careful with it because it can be dangerous because it’s obviously very cold.
“Basically, you get some ice-cream mix and you have it in a bowl and you pour in the liquid nitrogen.
“It’s the reaction of the temperature difference with the air that creates the smoke.
“You just keep mixing it and the liquid turns to ice-cream.”
Craig and David served the ice-cream with sticky toffee pudding.
The Gray Ox is a 200-year-old country pub and eating house in the village of Hartshead, not far from junction 25 of the M62.
Heston Blumenthal is world renowned for his modern take on cooking.
He was labelled a molecular gastronomist, though he dislikes the term.
But he holds multiple honorary degrees in recognition of his scientific approach to cooking.
One of his signature techniques is the use of a vacuum jar to increase expansion of bubbles during food preparation.
This is used in such dishes as an aerated chocolate soufflé–like dessert, where these bubbles grow to a larger size.
He has also experimented with amplification to enhance the sounds, such as the crunch, created while eating various foods.