Extreme Foods

Scientists try to create no-melt ice cream

The end of sticky ice cream fingers is near.

The end of sticky ice cream fingers is near.  (iStock)

Aside from brain freeze and dropping your cone, melting is pretty much the worst thing that comes with ice cream.

But a group of scientists is working on a new ice cream formula that won't melt—even in the hot sun.

A team of molecular scientists from the Universities of Dundee and Edinburgh in the U.K. have created an ice cream recipe with a special new ingredient—a naturally occurring protein that binds water, fat and air in the ice cream --allowing for a firmer, longer lasting scoop.

The protein, known as BslA, may also prevent ice crystals from forming, ensuring a smoother texture that's resistant to freezer burn. Since fat helps promote creaminess, the binding agent could also be used to created lower-calorie, lower-fat frozen desserts without sacrificing texture.

“We're excited by the potential this new ingredient has for improving ice cream, both for consumers and for manufacturers,” Professor Cait MacPhee, project leader and an biomolecular physicist at the University of Edinburgh, told The Telegraph.

MacPhee told the BBC that protein, which is developed from “friendly bacteria,” is virtually tasteless so it wouldn’t altar the traditional taste of ice cream diners know and love.

In addition to ice cream, the researchers believe BsIA could also be used to stabilize foods such as chocolate mouse and mayonnaise. It could also lessen the need for deep freezing certain manufactured foods.

Of course, your ice cream won’t last forever. MacPhee says, “It will melt eventually but hopefully by keeping it stable for longer it will stop the drips."

Non-melting ice cream may seem like the perfect way to cap off the summer but the scientists say you'll  have to wait three to five years before it's on store shelves.

So keep stocking up on the wet naps for this Labor Day Weekend.