One unusual ingredient makes the creamiest gelato ever!
I’ve been making gelato at home for quite a few years and have always been quite happy with the finished product….but I just learned a nifty little trick that has taken my gelato from great to outstanding! I’ll share the secret: add a few tablespoons of top quality extra-virgin olive oil to the custard mixture prior to freezing and you’ll get the creamiest, most delicious gelato ever. I’ll never make it another way now! My family prefers gelato to ice cream because it’s typically less sweet, lower in fat and served at a warmer temperature due to its increased density, making it easier to eat and more flavourful too. While we love vanilla and fruit-flavoured gelatos, this version – inspired by one of our favourite coffee shop beverages – is truly outstanding. Top it with a few edible flower petals and you’ve got a delicious, elegant dessert that is sure to impress.
- 2 cups (500 mL) milk
- 2 tablespoons (30 mL) loose Earl Grey tea leaves
- 1 cup (250 mL) heavy (35%) cream
- 2/3 cup white sugar
- 6 egg yolks (reserve whites for another use such as salted caramel meringue bites)
- 2 teaspoons (10 mL) good quality vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons (30 mL) top quality olive oil (I used Oleiva Premium)
- Heat milk in a small saucepan or in the microwave until steaming but not boiling. Stir in tea leaves and let sit for 30 minutes. Strain through a fine-meshed sieve or cheesecloth and discard tea leaves.
- Combine milk, cream and sugar in large saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring often.
- While the above mixture is heating, whisk egg yolks and salt together in medium-sized, heat-proof bowl.
- Gradually whisk in 1 cup of the warm milk mixture into the eggs, and then return the egg and milk mixture back to the pot and cook, stirring constantly with a heatproof spatula or wooden spoon, until custard reaches 185°F.
- Immediately strain custard through a fine strainer or cheesecloth into a heatproof bowl. Add vanilla extract.
- Place the bowl inside a larger bowl that has been partially filled with ice water. Stir the mixture every 10 minutes or so until it is colder than room temperature.
- Stir in olive oil and transfer the mixture to a smaller container. Cover and refrigerate until very cold (at least 4 hours; overnight is ideal).
- Freeze gelato in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions. Alternatively, you can freeze it in a metal pan, stirring every 5 minutes or so for a more uniform texture.
- Pack into a freezable container and freeze at least 1 hour before serving.
Makes 4 cups (1 litre).