Sometimes, ice cream and gelato can seem like the kind of dessert that you always buy and never make - but this recipe will convince you to make gelato at home!
Is there a better time of the year to whip up some icy, creamy gelato than summertime? Making gelato at home is so much easier than you think, and the quality of making it homemade is beyond anything you'll find at the store. Impossibly creamy, so refreshing and delicious, and you can really add whatever you want to it. Are you sold yet?!
Creamy gelato always starts with making a custard - a mixture of milk, cream, sugar and eggs. It's not at all a difficult process, but you do have to be somewhat careful! After heating milk, cream and sugar up on the stove, you need to add the eggs without scrambling them straight away. The method to counteract that from happening is called "tempering," which in this case, is the process of slowly adding some of the warm milk mixture to the eggs, and then slowly adding the gently warmed eggs back into the milk mixture. Voila - that's the hardest step of making gelato at home, and it's not even too bad!
After you've cooked your custard and strained it into a bowl, the options of what to add are really up to you! "Once you make the base custard of a gelato, you can kinda add whatever flavorings you want to it at that point," says Giada. For this recipe, she opted for chocolate hazelnut spread. "It is just silky and creamy and velvety." The beauty of adding chocolate hazelnut spread is that the natural fats from the hazelnuts make the gelato even more silky-smooth, and that quintessential flavor really packs a punch. However, you could add vanilla, almond extract, chopped pistachios, chocolate chunks, or really any add-in that you want. If you really want to get fancy with it, you could drizzle in melted chocolate toward the end of the mixing, and create streaks of chocolate in what Italians call stracciatella.
Before you put the custard through your ice cream maker, be sure to allow the custard to cool to at least room temperature. If it's still too warm before going into the machine, it could potentially not set up all the way before you set it in the freezer, which can result in an icier and less creamy gelato.
Once you've made your gelato and let it set in the freezer, you'll have an absolutely delicious treat on hand for whenever you need it. Trust us - this one will be on repeat!