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Date and Time
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October 22, 2016
1:00pm - 3:00pm
This afternoon I asked my product facilitator, Mr. Barrett, if I could schedule my appointment for my official Bruster’s ice cream making license. I had to create an account on the Buster’s franchise owner website to provide Bruster’s corporate with easy access to my information. Mr. Barrett helped me make an official test date on January 21, 2017. He also informed me to contact him before him on setting up times to practice for my certification.
The process I had to go through while creating my account was extremely tedious, and took close to an hour to create an account. After that was finished, Mr. Barrett helped me navigate my way to the ice cream making application. Finally, all the applications were finished and I got the email confirming my test date later that night.
Here I am getting help from my facilitator with some of the items listed on the franchise owner questionnaire.
October 29, 2016
12:00pm - 2:00pm
On this afternoon, Mr. Barrett told me to come in and check the store’s inventory. He told me that if I wanted to practice making ice cream at the store I would have to order myself extra supplies. He gave me some of his ingredients and told me the rest was up to me. I had 2 boxes of vanilla mix and 2 boxes of chocolate mix available to me. I ordered 1 more box of each mix just to be safe.
Checking inventory in an ice cream shop is a blisteringly cold task. I had to count the individual boxes of mix and extra additives along with checking the expiration dates on the products. The only problem I had was dealing with the cold, considering the temperature of the cooler is 36 degrees fahrenheit and the freezer is -15 degrees fahrenheit.
Here I am doing inventory; counting some of the store’s boxes of mix and getting an idea of what I have to work with.
October 30, 2016
4:00pm - 6:00pm
This evening, I was given permission to come to store and check out the ice cream machine I would be using. This particular machine is an Italian gelato machine that costs $25,000 new. Mr. Barrett told me that I need to learn how the machine works before I can use it to make ice cream. So I spent a couple hours disassembling and reassembling the machine.
Although I really wanted to make ice cream, I learned a lot of useful things when it comes to working with the machine. I learned the small kinks that particular machine had, and I also learned how it works using a an environmentally friendly joule heating device opposed to the common coolant pump found. on most ice cream machines
In this picture you can see me putting the door on the ice cream machine. The door itself weighs close to 40lbs.
On this evening, Mr. Barrett let me start to practice making my first frozen treat, italian ice. first he made me take out the recipe book and figure out which Italian ice I want to try out first. I selected green apple is my first Italian ice flavor because it was my favorite Italian ice and seemed very easy to make. I watched as Mr. Barrett made the first batch, and after I felt comfortable enough to do it on my own he let me try to make my own batch. After a slight confusion in the beginning, I created my first Bruster’s Italian ice. I then cleaned the gelato machine.
I was scared to start at first but after watching a professional before hand I was able to be more confident. The technique of flattening and rotating quickly was a lot harder than it looks and I struggled a little bit in that area. The italian ice comes out of the machine rather quickly.
In this picture I am dispensing my first Italian ice. I’m using a spade to flatten the ice as it comes out to prevent separation.
On this afternoon, Mr. Barrett planned to begin my sorbet training. Again, the first thing he brought out was the recipe book. He carefully explained to me what made a sorbet trickier to make relative to an Italian ice. Unfortunately I selected strawberry lemon sorbet, which was one of the most challenging sorbets to make. Once more I watched as Mr. Barrett easily pumped out a bucket of the sorbet. He then proceeded to help me set up for the next batch that I'd be making. I managed to create a delicious batch of strawberry lemon sorbet. I then cleaned the gelato machine.
The most challenging part of this was adding the fresh fruit and acids at specific times during the sorbets freezing cycle. The lemon water I had to mix was so unexpectedly thick that I broke a sweat stirring it. I found the dispensing of a sorbet very similar to that of an italian ice. That meant I could use almost the exact same technique.
Here I am mixing ingredients to add to the strawberry lemon sorbet. That specific ingredient is lemonade mix. lemon pulp. sugar. and water.
On this morning, Mr. Barrett started me on sherbet. After looking through the recipe book, I selected strawberry sherbet. Mr. Barrett went first and made a batch or strawberry sherbet while I watched. I then set myself up for a new batch and continued with creating the sherbet. After a small struggle with the new consistency and dispensing speed I had successfully made a sherbet. I then cleaned the gelato machine.
The sherbet was a little easier than the sorbet but harder than the italian ice. Sorbets have a small amount of Bruster’s special ice cream mix, and that made it hard to measure and time the different acids and bases. The technique i used to dispense it had to be changed because of its thicker consistency and it's quicker freezing rate.
In this picture I had just finished making strawberry sherbet. It is delicious as it looks.
This afternoon Mr. Barrett tasked me with the creation of my first beginner ice cream. He gave me the options of vanilla and chocolate, and I chose vanilla.He got the recipe book, and I then watched him set up and then make a batch of vanilla ice cream. He then proceeded to help me set up for the next batch. Not to long after that, I had created my first Bruster’s real ice cream. I then cleaned the gelato machine.
This was actually the easiest of all of the things I had to make. It required 1 ingredient (not including mix) ,and the only thing I needed to do to dispense it was rotate the bucket as the ice cream came out of the machine
In this picture I am pouring the special Bruster’s ice cream mix into gallon pitchers. About two gallons goes into every batch of ice cream.
This afternoon Mr. Barrett told me we would be making an intermediate level ice cream. He pulled out the recipe book again and let me choose this time. I chose butter pecan. We then proceeded with the regular routine. I watched him then went on to make it on my own. This was the first flavor I had to add an ingredient to during the dispensing of the ice cream. I didn't do as well as I would have liked, but he assured me that it was good for my first intermediate ice cream. I then cleaned the gelato machine.
This ice cream proved to be relatively harder than the last. Adding the ingredients prior to freezing was easy but when it came to dispensing the ice cream it became much harder. It was challenging to add pecans equally throughout the batch because the ice cream dispensed so quickly.
In this picture I am measuring out 5 oz of butter concentrate. This ingredient is added prior to freezing unlike the pecans.
This afternoon was a very challenging one. Mr. Barrett decided I was ready for my first advanced ice cream. He pulled out the recipe book again and told me to make dark chocolate raspberry truffle. Once more, I watched him set up and make make a batch. This flavor required me to add very specific amounts of ingredients before the freezing cycle and 3 more separate ingredients during the dispensing of the ice cream. After I finished this flavor, he said I can come in and practice before my test at anytime as long as I call in advance. I then cleaned the gelato machine.
This flavor was the hardest thing I had to do relative to achieving my product. I had to add chocolate chips, raspberries, and raspberry sauce. I also had to use a spade to flatten the ice cream as it dispensed along with keeping the bucket rotating. My first batch I made was a average at best. I was very happy Mr. Barrett decided to let me come in another time to work on it.
In this picture I am getting some ingredients for dark chocolate raspberry truffle. It’s one of the hardest flavors to make because of its many ingredients along with its soft consistency.
This was the big morning for me. It was the day I successfully earned my product. After arriving 30 minutes early with my boss, I met Kyle Whitley, the man responsible for issuing my ice cream certification exam. I had 1 hour and 30 minutes to sanitize the machine, make a flavor of his choosing (w/ recipe book) and disassemble and clean the machine. I finished these tasks with 20 minutes to spare! He then congratulated me and told me I received a 100%. He told me a certificate would be sent in the mail in a couple weeks.
This whole experience was nerve racking. I was a bit clumsy at first because I was so nervous. Mr. Barrett told me to relax and it got better from there. Luckily Mr. Whitley chose chocolate chip (relatively easy intermediate flavor). I was ecstatic to hear that I passed and literally jumped around for joy. I was even happier when I got my very own apron and certificate in the mail.
Here I am shaking Mr. Whitley’s hand after getting a 100% on my certification exam. This means Bruster’s has authorized me to make ice cream for public consumption. Mr. Barrett tasked me with the creation of my first beginner ice cream. He gave me the options of vanilla and chocolate, and I chose vanilla.He got the recipe book, and I then watched him set up and then make a batch of vanilla ice cream. He then proceeded to help me set up for the next batch. Not to long after that, I had created my first Bruster’s real ice cream. I then cleaned the gelato machine.
This afternoon was a very challenging one. Mr. Barrett decided I was ready for my first advanced ice cream. He pulled out the recipe book again and told me to make dark chocolate raspberry truffle. Once more, I watched him set up and make make a batch. This flavor required me to add very specific amounts of ingredients before the freezing cycle and 3 more separate ingredients durin