Frozen Yogurt is a frozen dessert made from, or containing yogurt or other dairy products. It is slightly more tart than ice cream, as well as lower in fat (due to the use of pure milk instead of cream). It differs from ice milk (more recently termed low-fat or light ice cream), which does not include yogurt as an ingredient.

History

Yummy frozen yogurt with various toppings

Frozen yogurt was introduced in New England in the 1970s as a soft serve dessert by H. P. Hood under the name Frogurt. In 1978, Brigham’s, a Boston based ice cream, candy & sandwich chain developed and introduced the first packaged frozen yogurt under the name Humphreez Yogart. It was originally intended as a healthier alternative to ice cream but consumers complained about the tart taste . Manufacturers began production of a recipe that tasted sweeter and frozen yogurt took off in the 1980s, reaching sales of $25 million in 1986. In the early 1990s, frozen yogurt was 10% of the dessert market.

Production

Frozen yogurt usually consists of milk solids, milk fat, yogurt culture, sweetener, gelatin, corn syrup, coloring, and flavoring. Milk fat comprises about 0.5-6% of the yogurt. Added in quantities inversely proportional to the amount of milk solids, the milk fat lends richness to the yogurt. Milk solids account for 8-14% of the yogurt’s volume providing lactose for sweetness and proteins for smoothness and increased resistance to melting. Cane or beet sugar provides 15-17% of the yogurt’s ingredients. In addition to adding sweetness, the sugar increases the volume of solid ingredients in the yogurt improving body and texture. Animal and vegetable gelatins stabilize the yogurt, reducing crystallization and increasing the temperature at which the yogurt will melt. This stabilization ensures that the frozen yogurt maintains a smooth consistency regardless of handling or temperature change.

Frozen yogurt can be made in an ice cream machine; however, major companies often use assembly lines specifically dedicated to frozen yogurt production. The milk products and gelatin are combined and homogenized. They are then cooled to 90 degrees Fahrenheit (32 degrees Celsius). At this temperature, the yogurt culture is added and the mixture is cooled to 40 degrees Fahrenheit (4 degrees Celsius). Once it has reached the desired temperature and viscosity the yogurt is allowed to sit in aging tanks for up to four hours. Sweeteners, colorings and flavorings are then mixed in and the yogurt mixture is cooled to 20 to 28 degrees Fahrenheit (-6 to -2 degrees Celsius). In order to create extra volume and smooth consistency, air is incorporated into the yogurt as the mixture is agitated. When a sufficient amount of air has been incorporated into the product the yogurt is rapidly frozen to prevent the formation of large ice crystals and stored in a cold place to be shipped.

Uses

Frozen yogurt has come to be used much like ice cream and is served in a wide variety of flavors and styles. Many companies allow customers the option of adding various toppings, or ordering their frozen yogurt in cups or in cones. Certain sellers even offer sugar-free varieties. Frozen yogurt made by chains such as Pinkberry, Red Mango, Blush, Yogen Fruz, and D-LitesĀ are tarter and closer to the original recipe, whereas other companies like TCBY and I Can’t Believe It’s Yogurt focus on making their frozen yogurt taste like ice cream.

Information Courtesy of Wikipedia Free Encyclopedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frozen_yogurt.