We know it’s coming to the end of the summer, but really, you can enjoy gelato any time of year! Whether it’s a refreshing treat when we inevitably get a random hot day in mid-September, or a spot of pudding after your tea, wouldn’t it be great to have some homemade gelato in the freezer, ready to go?
The problem is that many gelato recipes require an ice cream machine, which can be expensive. So we thought we’d try out this recipe for homemade chocolate gelato, without an ice cream maker, and review the finished product!
What you’ll need
A metal container (we used a loaf tin)
A mixing bowl
A heat-safe bowl or container
200g of cooking chocolate (we used milk, but you can use dark if you want a more intense flavour)
1 cup/130g of caster sugar
500ml milk (we used whole milk, but you could use semi-skimmed or skimmed if you wanted a low-fat option)
- Break 2 and a bit 150g packets of cooking chocolate into squares and add to a heat-safe bowl or container. Eat the remaining chocolate.
- Melt the chocolate. You can do this either in the microwave or the ‘melting over boiling water’ method that they do on Bakeoff. We did it in the microwave because it’s easier. Just put the chocolate in the microwave for 1 minute, take it out and stir. Then put back in the microwave for 20 second intervals, stirring in between, until all the lumps have gone. Set this aside to use again shortly. Oh, and don’t forget to lick the spoon!
- Separate the yolks of 5 eggs. Add your sugar to your eggs and beat together.
- Heat your milk over a low heat. Remove from the heat just as it starts to boil (you’ll start seeing bubbles rise up from the bottom).
- Add the milk to the egg mixture bit by bit, stirring thoroughly between each pour.
- At this point, we took a quick break to pop the loaf tin in the freezer, so it was nice a chilled ready for adding our mixture.
- Transfer your mixture to a saucepan and put it back on the heat until it boils, stirring occasionally. Be careful not to do this too quickly (you’ll see why shortly).
- Add your chocolate to your mixture. Mix thoroughly. Worry that it looks a bit lumpy, and suspect you may have heated up the mixture too quickly and cooked the eggs a bit too much.
- Convince yourself that it’ll probably be fine and add the mixture to your chilled tin. Pop it in the freezer and set a timer on your phone for 45 minutes. Use the 45 minutes to wash up (the chocolate bowl will be particularly fun to clean).
- After 45 minutes, or an episode of Game of Thrones, take your tin out of the freezer and give it a stir to break up any lumps of ice. Repeat this two more times.
- Leave the mixture to freeze for at least 7 hours.
The taste test
We left the ice cream in the freezer overnight to freeze thoroughly and the result… doesn’t really look like gelato. But the proof of the pudding is in the eating!
Despite the slightly questionable looks, it wasn’t half bad! The chocolate really came through and the texture was creamy. It was very sweet though, and we would probably recommend using dark chocolate and maybe adding some fresh strawberries to cut through the sweetness.
This was a simple and fun recipe to make at home and the result was some nice ice cream that would certainly do for a bit of pudding. The only downside was it was a bit fiddly in places, such as making sure you didn’t cook the eggs in the mixture or overcook the milk. It was also pretty expensive, with the ingredients coming to around £6 which is way more than you’d pay for a tub of chocolate ice cream or gelato.
And honestly – as good as it was, it can’t compare to the centuries-old recipe and methods used to make the creamy and lump-free gelato for our Basso gelato bar. If you’d like to hire Basso for your event, our friendly team would love to hear from you.