This recipe is inspired by the gelaterie of Rome, particularly the inventive flavours found in the artisan makers.
This base makes the kind of really smooth and heavenly ice cream that they serve in Italian gelaterie. Proper gelato is lower in fat than the ice cream we’re used to, and this is achieved by using more milk than cream and less eggs than a standard ice cream recipe.
Once you have mastered making a custard base like this you can add the flavourings suggested below or have fun experimenting with your own. You will need an ice-cream maker or use the method for churning by hand.
• 400ml whole milk
• 250ml double cream
• 100g caster sugar
• 4 egg yolks
1 In a large saucepan, heat the milk and cream with half the sugar over a medium heat until just bubbling. Meanwhile, in a large bowl beat together the egg yolks and remaining sugar until smooth.
2 Add 2 ladlefuls of hot milk to the egg mixture and immediately whisk together. Pour this back into the pan and whisk everything together until thickened.
3 To sterilise the ice cream, turn up the heat and increase the temperature of the mixture to 85°C. This is the point when the ice cream coats the back of a spoon if you don’t have a thermometer.
4 Take off the heat immediately and pour into a large heatproof bowl. To cool quickly, set this bowl over another bowl full of iced water, and then cover the surface of the custard with cling film (plastic wrap) to stop a skin from forming.
5 Stir every so often to help it cool evenly. As soon as the custard is at room temperature, churn in an ice-cream machine or by hand using the method below.
Recipe courtesy of Katie & Giancarlo, extracted from Rome