The ice cream maker is poised and ready in my kitchen, ready to churn some refreshing gelato (ice cream) and sorbetto (sorbet) this summer once again. Spring already yielded some incredible ice cream and sorbet recipes at the internet that I couldn't wait to try on my own. And some ideas of new flavors were also swimming around my mind.
Living in a country known for its gelato doesn't really dampen my spirits in creating my own at home. There is a wide array of flavors available at the gelaterie (ice cream shops) dotting the whole country but there are also times when there are some flavors that you cannot get. Chocolate is the most basic ice cream that you will definitely find everywhere and it is the flavor that always finishes ahead of the others. My family alone orders chocolate each mixed with other flavors. We all love a good bowl of chocolate ice cream. I always keep a jar of Fabbri amarena cherries in syrup in the fridge to mix with ice cream sometimes. My son, being the biggest fan of it.
As I promised to myself, the first ice cream that will come out from my ice cream maker this summer will be for the kids and I chose a recipe of a basic chocolate ice cream using 70% chocolate from my favorite gelateria Grom that originated in Torino (Turin) in 2003. Their aim is to produce ice cream like how it was done before with ingredients of very good quality. They have already branched out of Italy to New York, Paris & Tokyo. If you happen to pass by one, try their ice cream. I am crazy about their two chocolate ice cream flavors, cioccolato extranoir (extra dark chocolate) & cioccolato fondente (dark chocolate). And this simple recipe is a keeper. Its strong chocolatey flavor is incredible.
Basic Gelato al Cioccolato adapted from Guido Martinetti & Federico Grom of Grom's recipe (in Italian). The amarena cherries were my addition.
- 320 ml. milk
- 125 g. 70% chocolate, chopped
- 45 g. sugar (preferably white cane sugar)
- 2 tablespoons amarena cherries in syrup (I used Fabbri amarena cherries in syrup.). Change the amount according to your taste. Just keep in mind that they are quite strong in taste.
- mint leaves for garnishing (optional)
- Melt chocolate in a water bath or bain-marie. If you don't have the proper bain-marie, improvise by using 2 saucepans of different sizes on the stove. Fill up the bigger one with water until it touches the bottom of the second smaller saucepan that you should put on top of the bigger one. Put the chocolate in the smaller saucepan to melt.
- Meanwhile, in another saucepan, bring milk almost to a boil.
- Remove from heat and mix in melted chocolate and sugar.
- Mix well with a whisk then with an immersion mixer so that the milk and chocolate fats will mix better.
- Cool for a couple of hours.
- Pour mixture in an ice cream maker and let it churn for 25 - 30 minutes.
- Add amarena cherries (without syrup) and churn for another minute.