Fresh Peach Gelato
1 ½ cups whole milk
1 ½ cups cream
3 egg yolk
½ cup milk- cream mixture
7 tablespoons sugar
2 ½ cups milk-cream mixture
2 cups peaches, peeled pitted and chopped
1 Tablespoon confectioner’s sugar
Pour the milk and cream into a 4-cup measuring glass. Set a medium saucepan of water to boil. In a metal mixing bowl, whisk the eggs yolk, ½ cup milk-cream mixture and sugar until smooth. When the water boils, set the bowl over it. Cook gently, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the custard thickens and coats the back of the spoon. This happens right before boiling. Don’t let it boil. It only takes about 3 minutes to thicken.
In a blender, combine the rest of the Milk-Cream mixture, the peaches, confectioner’s sugar and cognac* if using. Blend until smooth. Chill the cooked custard and the peach- cream mixture. In the fridge until the custard is cold. Then combine custard and peach mixture and freeze in your ice cream maker. Start 2 or 3 hours ahead to serve on the same day, or plan for thawing time if serving the following day.
*A tablespoon of liquor can be used to keep the gelato soft after storing.
Serves 6 to 8
Black Forest Cookies
(adapted from Baked: New Frontiers in Baking)
Yield 8 dozen cookies
¾ cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
16 oz. bittersweet chocolate (60-72% cacao)
10 tablespoons butter
6 large eggs
1 ¼ cup granulated sugar
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup (6 oz.) semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup (6 oz.) white chocolate chips
2 cups dried cherries
- In a small bowl, whisk flour, baking powder and salt.
- In a medium bowl over a double boiler, melt butter and bittersweet chocolate together, stirring until smooth. Or, microwave using low power at 15-second intervals, stirring between, until melted.
- In a large bowl, beat eggs and sugars together until mixture looks thick and pale, about 5 minutes.
- Add the cooled chocolate mixture and vanilla to the eggs and stir until combined.
- Add the flour mixture and stir until flour is just incorporated.
- Fold in the semi-sweet and white chocolate chips and dried cherries.
- Refrigerate 6 hours or overnight.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and drop by rounded tablespoons. Place baking sheet immediately into oven and keep the remaining batter refrigerated between batches.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes until cookies look set and a few cracks appear.
- Let cookies cool slightly before transferring to a rack.
5 large pears (about 3 pounds), peeled, cored and chopped into chunks. (4 heaping cups.) use only perfectly ripe, fragrant pears for best results.
1 cup granulated sugar
- Squeeze juice of half the lemon into a bowl of water.
- As you work, place chopped pears in the acidulated water to avoid browning.
- In a large saucepan, place the granulated sugar and 2 cups of water.
- Simmer until sugar is dissolved, stirring often.
- Add drained pears and the juice from the other half of the lemon (about 1 tablespoon). Bring to a boil and simmer for 15 minutes.
- Cool slightly.
- Whirl pear mixture in blender until smooth.
- Pour into a gallon freezer bag, cool and chill in the refrigerator.
- At this point, the mixture can be frozen in an ice cream maker or by the following method.
- Freeze the mixture by laying the bag on a cookie sheet.
- Using a fork, break up the frozen mixture into small chinks.
- In a food processor, pulse small batches in 5-second intervals until smooth.
- Scoop into a shallow container and freeze.