Obviously, I did not make this gelato. I bought it for a specific reason, and I’m so glad I did. I wanted to buy some high-end chocolate bars for my husband; but since my car’s air conditioner works whenever it wants to, I was afraid I was not going to make it home in time before the chocolate melted. My solution was to buy something cold to keep in the bag. The only thing I could find in The Fresh Market was ice cream. And in this case, gelato. The least expensive one was Talenti. Being a sucker for packaging helped, too. I also thought I could use the gelato for a photo. So, voila! You have to work fast with frozen desserts, even inside. So I composed the photo with an empty dish before adding the gelato. Since this flavor is toasted almond, I sprinkled some sliced almonds on top. I also drizzled some chocolate sauce to add a little contrast. After I finished shooting, I finally tasted it. I have never, in my life, had better ice cream. Granted, I’ve never had gelato. But if it all tastes this good, it has won me over. But I can highly recommend this brand. I think I paid $5 or $6 for the pint. So it’s not cheap, but not too expensive, either.
I found this recipe in one of my old Martha Stewart Living magazines. I’m going to share the recipe because posted it online. I’m just looking for fun stuff to photograph.
Anyway, it’s pretty easy to make and very tasty.
2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/2 cup sugar
A pinch of coarse salt
2 large eggs
2 cups milk
1 vanilla bean, split and scraped, seeds reserved (I did not have this, so I just dumped several squirts of extra vanilla extract.)
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 ounce milk chocolate shavings for garnish (I used dark chocolate)
Prepare an ice bath; set aside. In a small bowl, combine cornstarch, 2 tablespoons sugar and a pinch of salt. Whisk eggs in a separate bowl until smooth. Whisk in cornstarch mixture.
Combine milk, remaining sugar and vanilla bean scrapings in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Slowly pour milk into egg mixture, whisking constantly. (You’ll want to really pour a little bit at a time here to allow the egg mixture to come up to temperature slowly. Otherwise, they will cook like scramble eggs.)
Return mixture to saucepan set over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, whisking constantly, until thickened – about 2 minutes. Remove pan from heat, and transfer mixture to a medium heat-proof bowl.
Whisk in butter and vanilla extract. Set bowl in ice bath, stirring occasionally, until chilled. Serve pudding with chocolate shavings on top, if desired.