Ice cream/gelato/frozen yogurts are some of the foods I can't live without, so I don't. I love them! If you enjoy them as well you shouldn't remove it from your diet. The Italians have mastered the art of this dessert. The rich creaminess, perfect amount of sweetness, and spot on flavors there is a reason why they are the masters in this arena of food.
Gelato evolved from the Chinese and Persian creations of shaved ice infused with fruit. Then it was brought by the Arabs to Napoli where these refreshing and vibrant cold desserts were introduced to dairy. In the 1800's in Napoli was the first documented recipe for gelato. The ice version still of course exists as sorbet or sorbetto. But with the edition of milk and eggs to a frozen style dessert allowed for this to become a much more rich and decadent treat. Gelato unlike ice cream does not take cream, only milk or reduced fat milk. The manner in which they churn the mixture allows for it to be very thick and creamy which gives gelato its richness without the heavy cream feeling. Also gelato is supposed to be consumed a bit more soft, whereas ice cream is frozen at a lower temperature so it stays harder.
Yields 8 servings of 1/2 cup
500 ml whole milk
4 egg yolks
130 grams cane sugar
100 grams 70% chocolate
40 grams unsweetened cocoa powder
A pinch of Salt
***If using an instant freeze ice cream maker, set it to the temperature or consistency you desire. If not, place the metal bucket in the freezer the night before. If you don't have an ice cream maker at all don't worry you can still make it!***
1. Using a double boiler melt the chocolate slowly. Make sure the heat is not to hot if not you will burn the chocolate. Stir occasionally.
2. Meanwhile in a sauce pot, heat the milk over medium heat. You want to bring it to a very light simmer. Once it simmers turn the heat to low.
3. You can do this next step by hand (which I did) or with a stand mixer with a whisk attachment. Separate the egg yolks from the egg whites (save the egg whites). Place the egg yolks and sugar in a bowl and whisk together. You are looking for ribbons and for the color to change to a pale yellow.
4. Once you have mixed the egg yolks and sugar, temper the eggs by ladling a scoop of milk into the bowl and whisking. Repeat. Then add the egg, sugar, milk mixture to the stove top in the sauce pan with the milk. Also add the melted chocolate. Stir together with a wooden spoon or spatula.
5. Remove from the stove top the pan and add the cocoa powder and the pinch of salt. Stir together. At this point the cocoa powder make start to clump it is okay.
6. With a strainer and bowl under the strainer, strain the mixture. Make sure to use a spatula and press through the strainer all the small bits and melted chocolate. Scrape the back of the mesh strainer because the chocolate sometimes likes to stay there.
7. Once your ice cream maker has been set to the right temperature or consistency, add the liquid mixture and let it churn. If you idon'thave an ice cream maker, pour this into a pyrex or container and place in the freezer over night (it wouldn't be as light this way but still good!). Once the gelato has churned put it into a container with a top and let it set in the freezer for 6-8 hours or overnight.