Thursday, July 21, 2011

Peach Gelato and Blackberry-Blueberry Sorbetto: Anticipation with a side of worry

In about two weeks, I am leaving behind my caps of motherhood and wifehood - the ones that say toothbrusher, butt-wiper, nose-wiper, cook, chauffeur, practice task-master, teacher, homework helper, boo-boo soother, bedtime buddy and errand girl, and going to celebrate ME.  Just me.  Joanne.  Not Joanne the mom, or Joanne the wife, but just Joanne.  Girlfriends from around the US, (NY, NC, TX, CA) are coming together.  Eight of us in all are all leaving behind motherhood and wifehood to just celebrate womanhood.

I worry however, that I will not be able to carry on a coherent conversation.  After all, for the past 7 years, most of my conversations have been interrupted by a child or a need.  I'm also wondering if I even know how to enjoy my food and eat slowly, as normally I'm scarfing down my food with my left hand, as I assist children with their meals with my right.  (Motherhood has forced ambidexterity on me.)  I'm not quite sure how I'll manage to NOT think about Family, as normally they are always at the top of my mind 24 hours a day.  What will I do with myself becomes the question?  I also worry, can Husband really handle it?  He is taking days off from work in order to be my stand-in, and of course I will have food prepared in the refrigerator for the family to consume, but I still worry.  Will he wake up on time to get the girls to school?  Will he remember to pick them up on time?  I begin getting agitated and worried about all the things that need to be managed while I am away.  (Husband, if you are reading this, do NOT be insulted.  It is simply my own worry getting the better of me.)

As much as I anticipate this weekend, my mind starts whirling a million miles a minute with worry.  I have found solace from this craziness in making sorbettos and gelatos.  And I like making them in pairs.  I like the contrast between flavors just as much as the anticipation of my weekend as a woman is heightened by my worries of what will happen back at home.  I paired this super creamy, rich peach gelato with the tart, dark, refreshing blackberry-blueberry sorbetto, and it was a match made in heaven.

Now, why gelato?  I love custard based desserts is the primary reason and a custard-based ice cream can only be better.  It does require that you take the extra step of making custard and as this custard needs to be chilled a day in advance, it also requires you to plan ahead a bit.  But those things aside, a gelato makes for a special texture in the ice cream and fresh from the maker, it has an almost gooey luscious quality that is in short, quite spectacular.  With the delicious subtlety of peach baked up by the richness of custard - it is, in short, just yummy.
Peach Gelato
adapted from Ciao Bella’s Book of Gelato and Sorbetto
Makes about 1 quart

2 cups whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
4 large egg yolks
⅔ cup of sugar
1 lb of peaches, peeled and roughly cut (about 3 cups of fruit)
1 tablespoon lemon juice

In a heavy saucepan add milk and cream.  Place over medium-low heat and cook, stirring occasionally so a skin doesn’t form, until tiny bubbles start to form around the edges.

Meanwhile, in a medium heat-proof bowl, whisk the egg yolks until smooth. Gradually whisk in the sugar until is well incorporated and the mixture is thick and pale yellow. Add ladlefuls of the hot milk mixture into the egg mixture whisking continuously. Continue adding milk ladleful by ladleful, quickly whisking until egg mixture is no longer cold. Pour in remaining hot milk mixture and whisk. (This is called tempering the eggs, so as to be sure that you don’t SCRAMBLE the eggs with the hot milk mixture.) Pour entire egg milk mixture bag into the saucepan. Cook, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon, until the custard is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon. Do NOT bring to a boil.

Pour mixture through fine mesh strainer into a clean bowl and let cool to room temperature, stirring every so often. Once completely cooled, cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours if not overnight.

Once custard is cooled, puree peaches and lemon juice with hand blender or blender. Carefully pour peach puree into custard and mix to incorporate fully. Pour contents into ice cream maker and turn on for 25 to 30 minutes, until mixture is starting to come together and gathering under the blade. Remove all gelato from ice cream maker and store in another container. Freeze for an additional 2 hours. Serve.

Blackberry-Blueberry Sorbet
Makes about 1 quart

¼ cup sugar
¼ cup water
¼ cup honey
5 cups mixed blackberries and blueberries, washed and picked over
Juice of 1 lime

In a heavy saucepan add sugar, water and honey. Over medium heat bring to a boil, dissolving the sugar and honey altogether. (Use a larger pan so as to avoid messy sugary overflow, which I experienced.) Remove from heat. Cool, and then refrigerate until syrup is cool.

With a blender or a hand blender, blend together cool syrup, blackberries and blueberries and lime juice. Pour contents into ice cream maker and turn on for 25 to 30 minutes, until mixture is stiff and bunching into the blades.

Remove all sorbet from ice cream maker and store it in another container. Freeze for an additional 2 hours. Serve.

Printable recipe


B's mommy said...

that looks so yummy!! perfect for these warm summer days.

Kevin said...

The berry sorbetto has an amazing colour!


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