I didn't want to spend a small fortune on an Ice Cream Maker and with the pricing on this...I didn't, BUT, this is NOT an Ice Cream Maker...it's an over-sized "Slushie" Maker. I've used recipes from different sources as well as the very few their booklet offers and none came out as Ice Cream despite the fact that I never use an uncooked recipe. From experience I know that French Vanilla, which is a cooked concoction, is much better and tastier than regular vanilla...which is uncooked. The cooked version of any Ice Cream is a custard base which starts off five times thicker than the regular versions of the same flavors. One would think that this, in and of itself, would help in keeping the mixture thick and ready to freeze properly through electrical churning. Not so...not at all! The four times I have used this thing culminated with their own recipe for Old Fashioned (cooked) Vanilla Ice Cream. The others were, Coffee, Butter Pecan and Strawberry. Pistachio would have been next but this thing is flying back to the manufacturer before you can say NUTS! Each recipe, including their own, was followed properly, not filled past their four cup recommended capacity, their container frozen for at least three to four days in advance and each batch of cooked base...properly chilled at for least 24 hours and most times more before taking the final step of churning. Note that I also use nothing but whole milk, half & half and heavy cream in my recipes. Not once was the final product ready to be put into containers and placed in the freezer...even after an hour of electrical churning! They recommend anything between 20 - 40 minutes of churning for this Ice Cream Maker. After an hour of churning their own Vanilla recipe...it came out as something far less than a poorly made soft serve...a thick milkshake at best! That was the straw that broke this camel's back! Great Ice Cream is expensive to make if you use the ingredients I do. With Heavy Cream selling for almost $5.00 bucks a quart...figure it out between the Cream, Half & Half, Whole Milk, Sugar, Eggs, Vanilla Beans at almost $10.00 bucks a bean for a Madagascar or even Pure Vanilla Extract and whatever Nuts, Berries, Flavorings one uses...it amounts to far more than what one would spend for the best of the best on the market. I don't mind spending it but what a waste of money when all you've managed to concoct after 30+ hours of preparation for one quart of Ice Cream is about a quart of a semi-thick shake! And as delicious as those ingredients make that shake...that's not what I bought this machine for! To top it all off I wrote to Hamilton Beach on this useless item. I received a very terse reply telling me I bought a Soft Serve Maker and had I read my Use and Care Booklet, I would have known that. No where in the advertising, the Amazon listing the Use & Care Booklet or anywhere else, is this machine referred to or mentioned as a Soft Serve Ice Cream Maker. Those of us who have used these machines by any manufacturer know that no Ice Cream Machine made for Home Use can replicate the store bought texture or hardness of Ice Cream but who wanted it to and who expected it to? Not I and that is for certain. I don't know why it is that manufacturers today take customers for morons but...I once had a Donvier,Ice Cream Maker, the older blue and white machine with the top crank handle that worked perfectly at a pretty low price! Unfortunately I sold it in a moment of weakness, but if that one is still manufactured....I'm off to purchase it...and if I'm not mistaken, I probably bought it here! So long Hamilton Beach!
Made five batches of peppermint candy icecream and found that using two cups of each recipe at a time made better volume and froze more quickly. Recipes included were great and all you need to do is use them for your base and make your own flavors. I really enjoyed using this product and the price was great. It is great to make your own icecream as you know what is in it and it tastes so much better.
- How did the color on site compare with the actual product? Perfect color to match anything in your kitchen
- Please tell us about the quality of the product. Great quality and easy to clean
- How accurate was the on site description of the product? very accurate