It’s not Puglian, but I couldn’t leave out one of the fundamental Italian ways of life – Gelato! As people who know me will tell you, I’m a big lover of Gelato. I recently landed my dream job of Gelato Chef in the heart of the Brighton lanes at Gelato Gusto.
Eating gelato in our little village, Cocumola, is one of my happiest childhood memories. I’ve mentioned it in a previous blog post but the gelato made in our village is one of the best I’ve ever tried, if you ever happen to be in that part of the world you must go and see for yourself.
A high milk content and being held at the warmer temperature of -15 are the two main factors which make gelato different to our British ice cream. You can sometimes put a little cream into the mix but overall gelato has much less fat in it than icecream. Better make that two scoops instead of one then…
This recipe is for almond olive oil gelato with fig ripple. Combing three great ingredients that are widely produced in the South, this gelato tastes a little savoury and earthy. The almonds give it a slight texture to echo a semolina pudding.
8 Egg yolks
100g Whole almonds
125ml Olive oil
6 Very ripe figs
Equipment you will need –
Ice cream machine
- If you have a gelato machine with a built in cooling system, turn it on.
- Heat the milk in a saucepan with the almonds, making sure to stir regularly until it just starts to simmer.
- Mix the sugar and egg yolks together in a bowl until pale and creamy. Put in the fridge until needed.
- Blend the nuts in the hot milk so they just start to break down. Strain the hot milk into a bowl.
- Pour the hot milk very slowly into the eggs, whisking continually to temper the yolks.
- Return the mixture to the pan and on a low heat, stirring constantly get the mixture up to 85C. Use a probe thermometer to check this. Make sure the mixture does not boil.
- Put the pan into an ice bath. Allow it to cool to 10C within half an hour.
- Cover the pan and age the mix for a minimum of 4 hours but preferably overnight.
- Pour the olive oil into the mix and blend in using the hand blender, then pour your mix into the gelato machine.
- While your gelato is churning, make the fig ripple. Crush the ripe figs into a pan along with a teaspoon of sugar and cook on a low heat until they become a jam like paste. Allow to cool.
- When the gelato is ready, decant into a dish so you can ripple the fig into it. Do this by spooning on 5 or 6 spoonfuls onto the gelato and using a twisting action of a spatula mix it in.
- Put into the freezer until needed.
Get the gelato out of the freezer 20 minutes before you’d like to eat it so it get’s up to temperature.