26 January 2012

The Ciao Bella Book of Gelato and Sorbetto

Years ago...

I would venture into Whole Foods and grab a pint of the most delicious blood orange sorbet made by Ciao Bella.

Then the evil queen...

also known as Oprah, decided to make Ciao Bella's Blood Orange Sorbet one of her "favorite things."


It was gone. Oprah's minions set out to eat it all. It was a full three years before one could find Ciao Bella's Blood Orange Sorbet in any store.

So you can just imagine our unmitigated joy when we found out that they were writing a cookbook. AS you know, we have a plethora of ice creamy cookbooks at our disposal. But this is a gem. In the first place, they make the whole process rather easy. Well about as easy as making ice cream can be, provided one owns a big ol' ice cream machine. But still...

Since moving far far away from the dazzling Whole Foods, transporting ice cream has become a bit of a hassle. So the DIY approach suits us well and if there is anyone we want to DIY ice cream with it would have to be F.W. Pearce & Danilo Zecchin. If you don't believe us, check out this New Yorker article.

Now we just love chocolate, but it is a bitch to clean up in our Simac. Next to the blood orange, this is terrific.

Classic Chocolate Gelato

2 cups whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate (about 60% cacao), finely chopped
4 large egg yolks
3/4 cup sugar

In a heavy-bottom saucepan, combine the milk and cream. Place over medium-low heat and cook, stirring occasionally so a skin doesn’t form, until tiny bubbles start to form around the edges and the mixture reaches a temperature of 170°F. Turn off the heat and whisk in the cocoa powder. Add the chopped chocolate, and stir or whisk until the chocolate is completely melted and the mixture is smooth.

Meanwhile, in a medium heat-proof bowl, whisk the egg yolks until smooth. Gradually whisk in the sugar until it is well incorporated and the mixture is thick and pale yellow. Temper the egg yolks by very slowly pouring in the hot milk mixture, whisking continuously. Return the custard to the saucepan and place over low heat. Cook, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon, until the custard is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon and it reaches a temperature of 185°F. Do not bring to a boil.

Pour the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer into a clean bowl and cool to room temperature, stirring every 5 minutes or so. To cool the custard quickly, make an ice bath by filling a large bowl with ice and water and placing the bowl with the custard in it; stir the custard until cooled. Once completely cooled, cover and refrigerate until very cold, at least 4 hours or overnight.

Pour the custard into the container of an ice cream machine and churn according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Transfer to an airtight container and freeze for at least 2 hours before serving.

If you don't live next door to the Whole Foods, grab up a copy of this book before summer and make your own.
If you do live next door, make your own anyway because one never knows when Oprah will open her mouth and steal away your favorite sorbet.

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