What is dry ice?

Dry ice is the solid state of carbon dioxide or CO2. It is obtained by reducing the pressure and temperature output of liquid CO2 from a cylinder in a controlled manner; this causes the CO2 to be converted into a clean, white carbonaceous snow. This snow (microcrystals) can be used as it is or it can be highly compressed to form pellets of different diameters, which guarantees a longer duration of cold temperature maintenance.

Dry ice is used in the food industry for cooling and transporting food and medicines that must be kept at low temperatures but without humidity.

In the kitchen and cocktail industry, it is often used as a visual effect and aroma vaporizer, in addition to achieving smoky and carbonated drinks, bubbling reactions, gas impregnations, surprising presentations in buffets with smoke effects due to the sublimation of dry ice.
Is it advisable to buy dry ice?

Pressed dry ice can be purchased from technical suppliers in quantities sometimes too large and with complicated logistics.

The main problem is its preservation: if we do not have a -80°C freezer, its storage and preservation become very difficult and we end up losing a very important part of the ice as it sublimates, i.e. it passes from the solid to the gaseous state. For small quantities or for sporadic use, it is better to produce the ice in your workshop and just when you need it.

How is dry ice formed?

CO2 gas, due to its high pressure and concentration, is condensed and liquefied (liquid phase). This liquefied gas, when violently released from the pressure, forms an ice powder that clumps and generates what we know as dry ice. Since it is ice produced by gas and not by a liquid such as water when it evaporates it leaves no moisture nor residues and disappears.

When dry ice evaporates, it produces a mist or fog with a very interesting visual effect. Moreover, as it is a carbon dioxide gas, when submerged in a fatty liquid it produces bubbles and explosive bubbles.

How to make dry ice in your business

Getting dry ice instantly is easy, safe, and does not require expensive machinery. The tools we use to trap these microcrystals and press them are called CONDENSERS.

These devices must be connected to bottles approved for liquid CO2 packaging, CO2 gas cylinders equipped with a probe immersed in the liquid phase.

They can be rented from companies specialized in food gases, which can easily provide you with a customized service.

We recommend not to use the CO2 cylinders of the beer pullers, as they are not equipped with a probe that will search in the liquid phase of the gas, located at the bottom of the cylinder.

To produce dry ice on demand: Dry-Ice Black

In our catalog, you will find different proposals to produce dry ice on demand and enjoy all the advantages of having unlimited access to this magical ingredient.

How to use

Screw your Dry Ice Black pellet condenser to the CO2 bottle,
Make sure the black curtain is closed to prevent the ice from escaping.
Gently open the outlet valve of the CO2 bottle and let the gas out, at its high-pressure outlet it will start to crystallize producing a compact pill.
Close the CO2 bottle valve.
Open the curtain and remove the dry ice pellet.
You can produce another pellet instantly.

Logistics and cost-effectiveness

Produce tablets from 30 g to 250 g at -78°C whenever and wherever needed in just 20 seconds.

Dry ice is tasteless and colorless and very easy to handle.

For a 22 kg bottle of CO2 Sonda can produce up to 130 tablets of 5 cm in diameter by 2.5 cm in height.

To obtain a higher yield, we advise you to produce the dry ice cubes in batches at the beginning of the service, as if it were a classic mise en place. To store the dry ice for a longer period of time, we advise you to keep it in a cork or polystyrene box. The more ice is produced and the less the storage box is opened, the longer it will keep.

Safety

You can handle dry ice without danger to yourself and your guests, although you should be aware of certain rules before use.

Do not leave dry ice loose in a drink: it could cause cold burns in your customer’s mouth and stomach. To avoid accidental ingestion of dry ice in beverages, we recommend using the individual Dry Ice Mixer mixing stick.

To incorporate dry ice into drinks for sharing, use the Gallon Glass and the Mix & Dry Kit.

Do not seal dry ice in completely airtight containers, as sublimation can generate dangerous pressure depending on the amount stored.
Dry ice for cooling glasses: CoolBar

CO2 can also be used to freeze containers or glasses in a few seconds. This makes it possible not to occupy cold rooms, or to work with the CoolBar in places that do not have freezers, without prior installation. Festivals, sites for events in natural settings, on the beach, in the mountains, to set up a restaurant or a pop-up bar in unusual places.

The CoolBar 2 is also equipped with a dry ice condenser, which allows you to frost the glasses directly, whether they are classic or our handcrafted glasses with special shapes, such as the Fugu glass.

You can use the dry ice cubes to carbonate and instantly cool your drinks. Or, if you don’t want to water down your drinks, or change the flavor of your cocktail, you can use the conical outlet of the CoolBar. If you use the CoolBar with wet glasses, you will obtain a different effect.

 

Dry ice applications for culinary techniques

Dry ice can be used to keep products cold for a longer period of time. For example, for the transport of perishable products. Because it does not contain water, dry ice is much more efficient in preserving products, since it optimizes storage space. In addition, once evaporated, dry ice leaves no traces in the container. There is no risk of water leakage that could ruin the products.

Use dry ice to carbonate ingredients such as fruits (grapes, melon, watermelon, peach…) and add a fizzy (spicy) touch. You can use these ingredients as an element to complete a dessert or as a garnish for a cocktail.

To obtain a dense smoke that is served as a sauce, combine the technique of cold smoking and dry ice:

Insert some dry ice pellets into our borosilicate jug, a material highly resistant to temperature shocks, and fill the jug with smoke produced with the Super Aladin smoking pipe. The temperature difference between the dry ice and the smoke will make the sublimation of the dry ice more spectacular. Once the cork lid of the jar is lifted, the smoke will fall like a ribbon onto your plate.

For more applications of dry ice and more mixed techniques, check out our YouCook video channel.