37 MINUTE READ
The Lello Musso Pola 5030 Dessert Maker, available from amazon*, was my recent upgrade from the smaller Lello 4080 Musso Lussino*, which I’d been using for about a year. After close to a month of testing, I’ve found that it produces exceptional ice cream that is extremely smooth, dense, and creamy. It has a maximum capacity of 1500 ml (1.59 quart) of ice cream mix, although I’ve found an optimum capacity of 1100 ml (1.16 quart) of ice cream mix, producing about 1300 ml (1.37 quart) of extremely smooth, dense, and creamy ice cream with about 18% air in 11 minutes 55 seconds. I’ve also gotten great results with gelato: freezing 880 ml (0.93 quart) of gelato mix produces about 1000 ml (1.06 quart) of smooth, dense, and creamy gelato with about 14% air in 10 minutes 45 seconds. My only complaint is the gap between the central pin and the surrounding plastic, which can let in ice cream mix during extraction and cleaning if you’re not careful.
You can view the top selling ice cream machines on amazon by clicking here*.
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Table of Contents
- 1. My Review Method
- 2. Ice Crystals in Ice Cream
- 3. Factors Affecting Nucleation, Growth, and Recrystallisation
- 3.1 The Scraper Blades
- 3.2 Air In Ice Cream
- 3.3 The Freezer Bowl Wall Temperature
- 3.4 Draw Temperature
- 3.5 Residence Time
- 4. Does the Lello 5030 Make Good Ice Cream and Gelato?
- 5. How does the smaller Lello 4080 compare to the Lello 5030?
- 6. General Questions
- 7. My only complaint
- 8. Summary
- 9. What The * Means
- 10. References
1. My Review Method
I’ve used a slightly unconventional method of review. Let me explain. The best ice creams in the world have a smooth and creamy texture. This texture, primarily associated with a high milk fat content, is also determined by the average size of the ice crystals: smooth and creamy ice cream requires the majority of ice crystals to be small. If many crystals are large, the ice cream will be perceived as being coarse or icy. Because ice crystal size is a critical factor in the development of smooth texture, I’ve discussed the key principles that underpin ice crystal formation and growth, and how these principles are affected by the features of the Lello Musso Pola 5030. By having an understanding of these key principles, I hope that you’ll be in a better position to evaluate this machine.
If you’re short on time, you can skip to the Summary of this review. If you’d like a nice long read, then sit back, grab yourself a hot cup of cocoa, and the enjoy this comprehensive review; it will take 37 minutes to read. 🙂
2. Ice Crystals in Ice Cream
Ice crystals range in size from about 1 to over 150 μm in diameter, with an average size of about 25 μm in commercial ice cream (1 2 3 4 5 6). Small ice crystals, around 10 to 20 µm in size, give ice cream its smooth and creamy texture, whereas larger ice crystals, greater than 50 μm, impart grainy texture (5 7 8). To produce ice cream with the smallest possible ice crystals, it’s important to develop an understanding of ice formation (known as crystallisation) during the freezing of ice cream.
Ice cream is frozen in two stages, the first being a dynamic process where the mix is frozen in a scraped-surface freezer (SSF) (an ice cream machine) whilst being agitated by the rotating dasher (a mixing device with sharp scraper blades attached) to incorporate air, destabilise the fat, and form ice crystals. Upon exiting the SSF, the ice cream, at about -5°C to -6°C (23°F to 21.2°F) and with a consistency similar to soft-serve ice cream, undergoes static freezing where it is hardened in a freezer without agitation until the core reaches a specified temperature, usually -18°C (-0.4°F). Cook & Hartel9 argue that the dynamic freezing stage is arguably the most important step in creating ice cream because this is the only stage in which ice crystals are formed.
During dynamic freezing, the ice cream mix is added to the SSF at between 0°C and 4°C (32°F and 39.2°F). As the refrigerant absorbs the heat in the mix, a layer of water freezes to the cold barrel (the bowl in the case of the 5030) wall causing rapid nucleation (the birth of small ice crystals) (10). For smooth and creamy ice cream, it’s important to have a high rate of nucleation so as to form as many small ice crystals as possible (3). The more ice crystals that are formed during dynamic freezing, the more will be preserved during static freezing, resulting in a smaller average crystal size and smoother texture (9).
2.2 Growth and Recrystallisation
The crystals that form at the cold bowl wall are then scraped off by the rotating scraper blades and dispersed into the centre of the bowl, where warmer mix temperatures cause some crystals to melt and others to grow and undergo recrystallisation. Recrystallisation is defined as “any change in number, size, shape… of crystals” (11) and basically involves small crystals disappearing, large crystals growing, and crystals fusing together. The greater the extent of growth and recrystallisation in the centre of the bowl, the larger the ice crystals will be. Russell et al.12 found that crystallisation during the freezing of ice cream is dominated by recrystallisation and growth and that these mechanisms appear to be more important than nucleation in determining the final crystal population.
3. Factors Affecting Nucleation, Growth, and Recrystallisation
3.1 The Scraper Blades
Nucleation is affected by the rate of heat transfer from the mix to the cold freezer bowl, with a high rate of heat transfer promoting a high rate of nucleation (3 13). Because heat travels more slowly through ice than stainless steel, ice build up on the freezer bowl wall acts as an insulator and lowers the rate of heat transfer.
Keeping the scraper blades sharp and close to the bowl wall helps promote a high rate of heat transfer by scraping off any ice that forms at the wall (13). Ben Lakhdar et al.14 found that a large gap between the scraper blades and the bowl wall slowed heat transfer. This was attributed to a permanent ice layer, which forms between the blades and the wall only when the gap is high enough (3 mm). When the gap is 1 mm, the ice layer is not strong enough and is periodically removed from the wall.
Does the Lello 5030 leave a gap between the scraper blades and the bowl wall?
The Lello Musso Pola 5030 comes with a heavy stainless steel dasher that has 2 protruding stainless steel arms, one longer than the other. Only the long, curved arm scrapes the ice that forms at the bowl wall and on the bowl floor. I’ve found that when fitted onto the central pin inside the bowl, the long arm leaves a gap of 1 mm at its closest point to the wall, where it starts to curve upwards, increasing to 2 mm just over half of the way up the arm where it curves slightly away from the wall, and a 1 mm gap at the bowl floor. This results in a 1-2 mm layer of ice freezing to the bowl wall and floor during dynamic freezing, which isn’t thick enough to significantly lower the rate of heat transfer. So far so good.
The amount of air incorporated into a mix during dynamic freezing (referred to as the overrun) affects the size of the ice crystals, with slightly larger ice crystals observed at a lower overrun (15 16). Flores and Goff17 suggested that overrun below 50% does not influence ice crystal size, but the amount of air cells at 70% overrun is just enough to prevent collisions among ice crystals, which can result in an increase in crystal size. Sofjan & Hartel6 found that increasing the overrun in ice cream (from 80% to 100% or 120%) led to the formation of smaller ice crystals, although the effect was relatively small.
How much air does the 5030 whip into ice cream?
Goff & Hartel13 note that standard ice cream has between 100% and 120% air (yes, 120% air!), premium between 60% and 90%, and superpremium 25% to 50%. The dasher in the 5030 rotates at a relatively low 86 revolutions per minute (rpm), compared to typical speeds of 100-200 rpm in commercial machines, producing ‘superpremium’ ice cream with between 11% and 25% air, depending on the batch size. I’ve found that, in general, the greater the batch size, the more air is incorporated into the mix (I’ve posted the results of my air content tests below; I used my vanilla ice cream recipe, which you can read here, as the test formulation).
Despite slightly smaller ice crystals being observed in ice creams with 70% air or more, I personally prefer the texture of denser, chewier, ice cream with an air content of between 10% and 30% to the lighter, airier ice cream produced by my commercial Emery Thompson CB-200, which incorporates about 60% air. This also seems to be the consensus amongst the group of creatives that share the building where I have my commercial kitchen space and who also double as my tasters.
Ice cream air content and freezing time results
· 700 ml (0.74 quart) of mix produces about 790 ml (0.83 quart) of frozen ice cream with about 11% air in 9 minutes.
· 800 ml (0.85 quart) of mix produces about 890 ml (0.94 quart) of frozen ice cream with about 11% air in 9 minutes 30 seconds.
· 900 ml (0.95 quart) of mix produces about 1000 ml (1.06 quart) of frozen ice cream with about 11% air in 9 minutes 50 seconds.
· 1000 ml (1.06 quart) of mix produces about 1200 ml (1.27 quart) of frozen ice cream with about 20% air in 12 minutes 15 seconds.
· 1100 ml (1.16 quart) of mix produces about 1300 ml (1.37 quart) of frozen ice cream with about 18% air in 11 minutes 55 seconds.
· 1200 ml (1.27 quart) of mix produces about 1500 ml (1.59 quart) of frozen ice cream with about 25% air in 14 minutes 20 seconds.
· 1300 ml (1.37 quart) of mix produces about 1600 ml (1.69 quart) of frozen ice cream with about 23% air in 16 minutes.
Does the Lello 5030 make gelato?
Yes, the Lello 5030 does make gelato. All domestic ice cream machines are capable of making gelato. Let me explain. Italian-style ice cream is referred to as gelato, the Italian word for ice cream. There are, however, significant differences between traditional gelato and regular ice cream: gelato is typically lower in milk fat (4-8% in gelato, 10-18% in ice cream), total solids (36-43% in gelato, 36->40% in ice cream), and air (20-40% in gelato, 25-120% in ice cream) but higher in sugar (up to 25% in gelato, 14-22% in ice cream) (13). Gelato also tends to be softer, more pliable and stickier than ice cream, and is served at warmer temperatures.
How much air does the 5030 whip into gelato?
I’ve found that the 5030 incorporates about 14% air into 880 ml (0.93 quart) of gelato mix, producing about 1000 ml (1.06 quart) of smooth, dense, and creamy gelato in 10 minutes 45 seconds. I’ll be posting the gelato recipe that I used for my tests on the blog soon.
3.3 The Freezer Bowl Wall Temperature
Decreasing the temperature at the freezer bowl wall causes higher ice crystal nucleation rates and reduces recrystallisation in the centre of the bowl, which helps ice crystals remain small. (8 12). Cook & Hartel18 simulated ice cream freezing in an ice cream machine by freezing ice cream mix in a thin layer on a microscope cold stage. The temperature at which the ice cream mix was frozen on the cold stage varied from -7°C, -10°C, -15°C, and -20°C (19°F, 14°F, 5°F, and -4°F). The researchers found that warmer freezing temperatures gave more elongated and slightly larger crystals with a wider size distribution.
To promote the formation of smaller ice crystals, the temperature of the refrigerant should fall within the range of -23°C to -29°C (-10°F to -20°F) (13), with the freezer bowl wall temperature estimated to be a few degrees warmer.
How cold does the bowl get?
I’ve found that the R134A refrigerant is able to get the bowl wall temperature down to between -24°C (-11.2°F) and -32.9°C (-27.2°F), and the bowl floor temperature to between -14°C (6.8°F) and -22.6°C (-8.7°F). These readings I took at different points of the empty bowl with an infra-red thermometer after having left the compressor running for 20 minutes. The warmer bowl floor temperatures suggest that the tubing that carries the cold refrigerant is wrapped around the bowl wall, but not the floor. I think the guys at Musso have slightly missed the mark here. Had they been able to get the bowl floor, which has a larger surface area than the wall and thus contacts more of the mix, down to the same low temperature as the wall, the 5030 would be able to promote higher ice crystal nucleation rates, reduce recrystallisation in the centre of the bowl, and reduce the freezing time, all of which contribute to the formation of smaller ice crystals and smoother texture.
Is the bowl removable?
Nope. The Lello Musso Pola 5030 has a non-removable 1.9 litre (2 quart) stainless steel bowl, which I haven’t found difficult to empty or clean.
What is the maximum capacity?
In a telephone conversation with the owner of Gelatiere Musso, I was told not to freeze more than 1500 ml (1.6 quart) of ice cream or gelato mix per batch. The largest batch I’ve tested in the 5030 is 1300 ml (1.37 quart) of ice cream mix, which produced about 1600 ml (1.69 quart) of smooth and creamy ice cream with 23% air in 16 minutes.
As I’ll discuss in section 3.5 of this review, longer freezing times produce larger ice crystals. Larger batch sizes produce more ice cream (unsurprisingly), but they also require longer freezing times, which produce larger ice crystals. It’s therefore important to balance maximising the amount of ice cream produced per batch with minimising the freezing time. I’ve found the optimum batch size to be 1100 ml (1.16 quart) of ice cream mix, which produces about 1300 ml (1.37 quart) of extremely smooth and creamy ice cream with about 18% air in 11 minutes 55 seconds.
3.4 Draw Temperature
The draw temperature is the temperature at which ice cream is removed from the bowl once dynamic freezing is complete. In commercial machines, this is usually -5°C to -6°C (23°F to 21.2°F) (13). Draw temperature significantly influences mean ice crystal size because it determines how much water is frozen during dynamic freezing and, consequently, how many ice crystals are formed. Decreasing the draw temperature results in more water being frozen and increased ice crystal content (19). The more ice crystals that are formed during dynamic freezing, the more will be preserved during static freezing, resulting in a smaller average crystal size and smoother texture (9).
Drewett & Hartel8 showed that ice crystals were larger at draw temperatures from -3°C to -6°C (26.6°F to 21.2°F). When the draw temperatures were colder than -6°C (21.2°F), the mean ice crystal size decreased.
Low Temperature Extrusion
Bolliger20 and Windhab et al.21 investigated the influence of Low Temperature Extrusion (LTE) freezing of ice cream, where ice cream exiting the SSF at -5°C to -6°C (23°F to 21.2°F) is frozen further to about -13°C to -15°C (8.6°F to 5°F) in an extruder with slowly rotating screws, on the ice crystal size in comparison to conventional draw temperatures. It was shown that the mean ice crystal size was reduced by a factor of 2 by means of the LTE process compared to conventional freezing. Sensorial properties like consistency, melting behaviour, coldness, and scoopability also showed clearly improved values (21).
Besides the ice crystal size, the size and distribution of air cells and fat globules are of primary importance, especially on the sensorial aspect of creaminess. To obtain creamier ice cream, it’s important to generate ice crystals, air cells, and fat globule aggregates as small as possible (22). LTE helps to prevent air bubbles from coming together, thereby retaining the smallest size distribution (7). Air Bubbles in the 10-15 μm range have been reported in LTE frozen ice cream, compared to conventionally frozen ice cream samples with bubbles in the 40-70 μm range (23). LTE also helps to reduce the size of agglomerated fat globules compared to conventionally frozen ice cream (24 25).
LTE generally promotes enhanced fat destabilisation, which is partially responsible for slow melting and good shape retention (23). Fat destabilisation in LTE treated ice cream can be twice that achieved during the conventional freezing process (26). Because of smaller air bubbles and fat globule aggregates, as well as a higher degree of fat destabilisation, LTE ice cream is evaluated creamier than conventionally produced ice cream (22).
How do you know when the ice cream is done?
In line with the beneficial effects of LTE freezing on ice cream texture reported above, I’ve found that ice cream extracted from domestic ice cream machines at draw temperatures of -10°C (14°F) or lower is perceived smoother and creamier than that extracted at conventional draw temperatures of around -6°C (21.2°F). To measure draw temperature, I use a cheap infra-red thermometer*.
I’ve found that the the dasher motor in the 5030 is able to produce sufficient torque to continue agitating the mix to an optimum draw temperature of -11°C (12.2°F). Below -11°C (12.2°F), the dasher slows and comes to a stop. I wouldn’t recommend running the dasher below -11°C (12.2°F), or until it stops, as this will very likely cause the plastic gear wheels connecting the dasher motor to the drive shaft that rotates the dasher to quickly wear. On the few occasions that I’ve let my ice cream get below -11°C (12.2°F), I’ve noticed a very slight smell of warm plastic coming from the front of the machine, which I’m guessing is the smell of the two plastic gear wheels wearing.
It’s important to switch the dasher off if you see it slowing or skipping towards the end of freezing, or if you see that it stops completely. Leaving the dasher switched on once it has stopped will cause the 2 gear wheels connecting the dasher motor to the drive shaft to quickly wear. You’ll smell a warm/burnt plastic smell if you leave the dasher switched on once it starts to slow or skip.
3.5 Residence Time
Residence time, which refers to the length of time ice cream spends in the bowl and takes to reach its draw temperature, has a significant effect on the final ice crystal size distribution, with shorter residence times producing ice creams with smaller ice crystals due to a decline in recrystallisation (4 8 9 12 13). Longer residence times mean that ice cream spends more time in the bulk zone (the centre) of the bowl where warmer temperatures cause rapid recrystallisation. Donhowe & Hartel1 measured a recrystallisation rate at -5°C (23°F) of 42 μm/day. At this rate, a size increase of around 8 μm would be expected over a 10 minute period. This matches almost exactly the increase in crystal size observed by Russell et al.12 at a slightly different temperature of -4°C (24.8°F).
A high rate of heat transfer and colder bowl wall temperatures contribute significantly to shorter residence times. Lower bowl wall temperatures lower the bulk temperature of the ice cream faster, reducing residence time and improving the ice crystal size distribution (8 12). Investigating the effect of draw temperature, dasher speed, and residence time on ice crystal size, Drewett & Hartel8 concluded that residence time had the greatest impact on final crystal size distribution, followed by drawing temperature and dasher speed. Contrary to this conclusion, I’ve found that drawing temperature has a greater impact on final crystal size distribution, followed by residence time and dasher speed.
How long does it take to freeze a batch of ice cream?
I’ve found that it takes an impressive 11 minutes and 55 seconds to freeze an optimum 1100 ml (1.16 quart) of ice cream mix to a draw temperature of -11°C (12.2°F). The residence time is reduced to just 9 minutes and 50 seconds when a batch size of 900 ml (0.95 quart) of mix is frozen, producing about 1000 ml (1.06 quart) of exceptionally smooth, dense, and creamy ice cream with about 11% air. I’ve listed the residence times of all my ice cream test batches in section 3.2 of this review.
Switch the compressor on and leave it running for 20 minutes before you pour in your mix. This will ensure that the bowl is as cold as possible when the mix is added, which will promote higher rates of nucleation, reduce recrystallisation, and reduce the residence time. In a test to compare a batch frozen with a 20 minutes pre-freeze to one with no pre-freeze, I found that the residence time increased from 12 minutes 15 seconds for 1000 ml (1.06 quart) of ice cream mix with a 20 minute pre-freeze, to 22 minutes minutes 45 seconds for the same amount of mix with no pre-freeze.
Interestingly, I’ve also found that when I don’t run the 20 pre-freezing step before I pour in my mix, not only does the residence time increase, but the draw temperature also increases as the dasher stops once the draw temperature reaches -10°C (14°F).
Yes I’ve found that the Lello 5030 consistently makes exceptionally smooth, dense, and creamy ice cream and gelato. Because of the low air content that is incorporated into a mix, the 5030 produces nice dense, or ‘fudgy’ as one of the carpenters in my shared workspace described it, ice cream that I prefer to lighter, airier, ice cream with a higher air content. I get consistently smooth and creamy results with my Vanilla Ice Cream Recipe. I will be posting my vanilla gelato recipe on the blog soon.
5. How does the smaller Lello 4080 compare to the Lello 5030?
Before I upgraded to the larger 5030, I had been using my Lello 4080 Musso Lussino for close to a year. The most significant differences that I’ve found between the two are 1. the freezing capacity, 2. the freezing time, and 3. the quality of the ice cream and gelato.
The larger 5030 is able to produce about 1.5 times the amount of ice cream per batch as the 4080. The latter has a maximum capacity of 1000 ml (1.06 quart) of mix, which produces about 1200 ml (1.27 quart) of ice cream with about 20% air in 37 minutes, whereas the former has a maximum capacity of 1500 ml (1.59 quart) of mix, although the largest batch I’ve tested so far is only 1300 ml (1.38 quart) of mix, which produces 1600 ml (1.7 quart) of ice cream in 16 minutes.
As I’ve previously mentioned, shorter freezing times promote the formation of smaller ice crystals and smoother texture. The 5030 significantly reduces the freezing time compared to the 4080. The former takes an impressive 9 minutes to freeze a 700 ml (0.74 quart) batch of ice cream mix to an optimum draw temperature of -11°C (12.2°F), whereas the latter takes 17 minutes 30 seconds to freeze the same amount of mix to a draw temperature of -10°C (14°F).
Ice Cream Quality
In a taste test, I, along with three other tasters, found that the 5030 produced ice cream that was just very slightly smoother and creamier than that produced by the 4080 when two identical batches consisting 23% butterfat were frozen, although the difference was negligible. When the butterfat content was reduced to 18%, however, the difference in texture was more pronounced: the 5030 produced smooth and creamy ice cream with no detectable iciness or coarseness, whereas the 4080 produced ice cream that felt slightly coarse as it melted in the mouth. Butterfat masks the perception of large ice crystals in the mouth, which is why they are not detected in a high butterfat mix but then become noticeable as the butterfat content is reduced.
In a taste test to compare gelato quality, I, along with 3 other tasters, found that although both machines produced gelato that was smooth, creamy, and had very few coarse or icy bits, the gelato produced by the 5030 was perceived smoother and creamier with fewer icy or coarse bits.
6. General Questions
What are the dimensions, Weight, and Voltage?
The Lello 5030 comes in an impressive and commercial-looking all stainless steel finish. The only bits of plastic on the exterior of the machine are the freezer bowl lid, the timer knob, and the dasher and condenser buttons. It’s a relatively big and heavy machine, measuring 31 cm (12.2″) in height (35 cm (13.8″) with the bowl lid in place), 51 cm (20″) in width, and 35 cm (13.8″) in depth, and weighing 31 kg (68.3 pounds). It’s quite tricky to move and is definitely not a machine that you can put away in the cupboard and bring out when needed. This bad boy needs its own space. Here in the UK, it runs on 230v 50Hz and operates at 250 watts (+/- 10 watts). In the US, it’s 110/120v 60Hz.
Is it Noisy?
Yes I’d say this is a fairly loud machine, although I haven’t found it a problem being in the same room with it running. To test the noise level, I recorded an ambient room sound level of 50.5 dbs. This increased to 58.2 db with the compressor switched on, rising to 70.9 db when freezing a batch. These readings were taken from about 15 cm (5.9″) from the front of the machine. Although the 70.9 db of noise during freezing is lower than the 73 db of noise recorded for the smaller Lello 4080, the 5030 still appears to me to be louder (perhaps my iphone isn’t the most reliable device to measure noise?).
Is it easy to clean?
Yes the stainless steel bowl and housing are very easy to clean. I’ve read several reviews on amazon where users have complained that cleaning the built-in bowl is tricky, but I really haven’t found this to be a problem at all. After I extract my ice cream, I usually wait 2-3 minutes for the bowl to warm slightly before using a sponge and warm soapy water to give the bowl and central pin a good clean. This is then followed by some paper towels to dry. The dasher, metal bolt that holds the dasher in place inside the bowl, and the bowl lid I clean in the sink. I’d say that cleaning this machine takes me no more than 5 minutes.
What is the Warranty?
Here in the UK, the Lello 5030 has a 2-year manufacturers’ warranty, whilst you guys in the US only seem to get a 1-year warranty. I have, however, read some ominous reviews on amazon about the customer service in the US.
Can it freeze batches back-to-back?
It can indeed. I bought the 5030 as an upgrade to my smaller Lello 4080, with which I used to to freeze about 9 batches of ice cream back-to-back in around 6 hours, producing about about 8,400 ml (8.9 quart) of ice cream. With the 5030, I can freeze 9 batches back-to-back in about 3.5 hours, producing 13.5 litres (14.27 quart) of ice cream. I’ve found that the 5030 doesn’t overheat during 3.5 hours of near continuous use, but have found that each batch does take slightly longer to freeze. This is to some extent because some ice cream invariably stays in the bowl after extracting the first batch, which increases the weight of the subsequent batch and, consequently, the freezing time.
7. My only complaint
An issue that’s been raised in a review of the 5030 on amazon, which you can read here, is ice cream mix getting in the gap between the central pin inside the bowl and the plastic that surrounds it. This ice cream mix then hardens over time, which increases the friction between the rotating central pin and surrounding plastic, placing more stress on the dasher motor and gears. The user noted that hardened ice cream between the central pin and the hard plastic on her 5030 caused the drive gear to fail, although this was after 10+ years of use.
The instruction manual states ‘not to get the central pin wet’, which I’ve found near impossible during extraction and cleaning. When I first got my Lello 4080, which uses the same central pin design, I used to remove the bolt that screws onto the central pin to secure the dasher, along with the dasher itself, before emptying my frozen ice cream into a container. I quickly realised this wasn’t the best of ideas as ice cream would nearly always fall directly onto the sweet spot between the central pin and surrounding plastic as I scooped it out of the bowl. I’ve now found that leaving the bolt and dasher in place whilst I extract my ice cream is a much better approach as both act as a protective layer that helps keep ice cream off the central pin. Still, even with the bolt and dasher left in place, I’ve found that ice cream mix does occasionally get onto the central pin in the 5030 either by falling off the dasher as it’s removed, or by dripping off my sponge during cleaning. When this happens, I quickly spray a little steriliser onto the pin and surrounding plastic and quickly dry with a paper towel. I don’t think this issue is a show stopper but certainly something to be aware of.
Leave the dasher and bolt fixed in place whilst you extract your ice cream. These will act as a protective layer that will help minimise the likelihood of ice cream getting into the gap between the central pin and surrounding plastic.
In the one month that I’ve been using this machine, I’ve found that the Lello Musso Pola 5030 Dessert Maker, available from amazon*, consistently produces exceptionally smooth, dense, and creamy ice cream. It has a maximum capacity of 1500 ml (1.59 quart) of ice cream mix, although I’ve found an optimum capacity of 1100 ml (1.16 quart) of ice cream mix, producing about 1300 ml (1.37 quart) of extremely smooth, dense, and creamy ice cream with about 18% air in an impressive 11 minutes 55 seconds. I’ve also gotten great results with 880 ml (0.93 quart) of gelato mix, which produces about 1000 ml (1.06 quart) of smooth, dense, and creamy gelato with about 14% air in 10 minutes 45 seconds. In a taste test, I, along with three other tasters, found that the 5030 produced both ice cream and gelato that were perceived smoother and creamier than that produced by the smaller Lello 4080 Musso Lussino*, with the difference in texture being more pronounced at lower fat levels.
I haven’t had any reliability issues with the machine in near continuous use for around 3.5 hours, although I have noticed a slight warmed plastic smell that I think is generated by the gear wheels connecting the dasher motor to the drive shaft. This is only noticeable when I extract the mix at temperatures below -11°C (-12.2°F), an an indicator that I may be leaving the mix in the machine for too long. My only complaint is the narrow gap between the central pin inside the bowl and the surrounding plastic, which can allow in ice cream mix during extraction and cleaning. This mix can then solidify inside the gap, increasing the stress on the drive mechanism, which may cause it to fail over time. I don’t think this is a show stopper, but definitely something to be aware of.
9. What The * Means
Transparency is key. On that note, I haven’t been paid to write this review, nor was I given this machine for free. I paid for this bad boy with my own money and have written this review in my own time. If there is a * after a link, it means that I will earn a payment if you go through it and make a purchase on amazon. This doesn’t increase the cost of what you purchase, nor do these links influence what I write, ever.
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