Food52 Best Non-Dairy Frozen Dessert, Runner Up
Food52 Editors' Comments: This gelato was good. It's soft from the amaretto, but still solid enough to scoop into a bowl. I wish I had swirled the ganache a little bit more since there were some big frozen hunks in there. Totally yummy.
Chocolate and nuts have a wonderful affinity for each other. This gelato is rich with flavors of amaretto, bits of toasted almond, and dramatic swirls of a coconut milk-based dark chocolate ganache. A few extra yolks enrich its texture, and a touch of good olive oil finishes the effect.
Makes 1 quart
16 ounces unsweetened almond milk
8 tablespoons granulated sugar, separated
1 tablespoon corn syrup
8 egg yolks
2 ounces olive oil
2 ounces amaretto
1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted
2 3.5-ounce bars bittersweet chocolate, chopped into pieces
8 ounces coconut milk
- Place the cylinder of an ice cream machine in the freezer at least 12 hours before you plan to make your ice cream.
- In a saucepan, whisk together the almond milk, 4 tablespoons of the sugar, and the corn syrup. Heat to a scald (tiny, uniform bubbles will form around the perimeter).
- In a stainless steel bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, the other 4 tablespoons of sugar, and olive oil. Set the bowl on a damp towel to stabilize it and slowly whisk in the hot mixture.
- Rinse out the pan in which you heated the almond milk and fill it with 3 inches of hot water. Return it to the stove over medium heat, set the bowl on it, and whisk until the custard cooks to 165° F.
- Remove the bowl from the heat and begin cooling it over an ice water bath. Whisk it frequently. Chill it to 40° F. Alternatively, chill overnight in the refrigerator. Stir in the amaretto once the custard has cooled.
- Assemble your ice cream machine with the frozen cylinder. With the motor running, pour the chilled custard into it. Allow to spin until it reaches the consistency of soft-serve ice cream, about 20 to 25 minutes.
- While the custard is spinning, make the ganache. Pour in the coconut milk into a saucepan and bring it just to a boil. Remove it from the heat and add the chopped chocolate. Let it sit for a couple of minutes, then stir until completely homogenous. Set the pan in an ice water bath, and cool the ganache while the custard is spinning.
- Also while the custard is spinning, spread the almonds out on a baking sheet lined with parchment.
- Preheat the oven to 350° F. Bake the almonds until toasted, about 7 minutes. Remove from the oven and place in the refrigerator to cool. Once cooled, about 10 minutes, pulse them briefly in a blender or food processor or chop them on a board with a knife to reduce them to about 1/4 of their original size.
- Place a stainless steel bowl in the freezer.
- When the custard is finished, scrape it into the chilled bowl. Quickly but gently fold in the toasted almonds. Pour the chilled ganache over the custard, and fold it into the custard in beautiful, big swirls.
- Cover the gelato with a sheet of plastic wrap pressed to its surface, and place it in the freezer. Freeze for at least 5 or 6 hours, preferably overnight.
- Serve to anyone at all. Your dairy-free people will be delighted that it doesn’t taste like such, and others won’t believe it.