A food expert has created a must-have for at least one week of the British summer – ice cream that doesn’t melt.
Gastronaut Ice Cream, which comes in a bar, can be enjoyed at room temperature wherever you take it, meaning this week’s record high temperatures would be no problem at all.
The organic snack is very different from its frozen counterpart, as it can be crumbled in your hands.
But once you begin eating it, the product transforms into the ‘exact same sweet and creamy ice cream you’ve known all your life.’
The recipe takes real ice cream which has been freeze-dried to preserve and dehydrates it, with nothing added to it except a pinch of salt.
Freeze-drying involves first freezing a food substance and then creating a powerful vacuum before adding heat which draws out the frozen liquid from the food as vapour.
The Gastronaut range currently consists of three mouth-watering flavours – Mexican Chocolate Chip, Cookies and Cream and Mint Chocolate Chip.
Rob Collignon, owner of Gastronaut Foods, said: “This is the only premium organic freeze-dried ice cream on the planet.
“I’ve always liked freeze-dried ice cream – they sell it in space museums and camping stores.
“I’ve eaten it my whole life but it doesn’t taste that good because they start with the cheapest ice cream imaginable.
“As I’ve aged, my tastes have changed, I now prefer organic foods with no preservatives or food colouring.
“Besides being healthier, they’re also more tasty. So I figured applying my current tastes to the product I loved as a kid would have good results.”
The 34-year-old, from Brooklyn, New York, USA, worked on his product for three and a half years before bringing it onto the market.
He has launched a fundraising campaign on crowd-funding website Kickstarter , which has already received nearly double the $9500 (£7199) target.
Mr Collignon said: “I started making ice cream in my Brooklyn apartment and freeze-drying it in a machine that took up half my kitchen.
“It was loud and thankfully no neighbours complained.
“Over time friends and co-workers liked what I was making so I decided to focus on it full time.
“I quit my office job in the Autumn 2015, gave up my apartment, and moved into a 1987 VW van.
“I travelled 20,000 miles through the US, Mexico, and Canada while working on the business. Once it was figured out, I settled in Upstate New York to launch the Kickstarter campaign.”
The product name ‘Gastronaut Ice Cream’ combines the word gastronomy – the art of cooking and eating fine food – with the original name for freeze-dried ice cream – ‘Astronaut Ice Cream.’
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Mr Collignon, who previously worked as a creative director, said: “Before you pop it in your mouth, it’s entirely different from frozen ice cream.
“It crumbles in your hands and is room temperature.
“But once you take a bite, it absorbs the moisture and transforms into the exact same sweet and creamy ice cream you’ve known all your life – but with no brain freeze.
“Ice cream is delicious and deserves to be eaten everywhere, no matter how far from a freezer.”
He added: “Freeze-dried ice cream has traditionally been for astronauts and backpackers, but I’m expanding that to every activity on the planet from living in a van to being in boring meetings.
“Anybody that appreciates quality food made with quality ingredients would enjoy Gastronaut Ice Cream.
“When people try it – at first they like it, then they love it, then they become addicted.” The bar will retail at about £4.50 ($6) and is currently available for about £3.80 per bar ($5) on Kickstarter.
After the Kickstarter campaign, Gastronaut Ice Cream will be available on gastronauticecream.com and in selected stores in Brooklyn, with hopes of expanding as far as the UK.