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Friday, October 14, 2011

Good vs. Evil

The bad me craves chocolate.  The good me argues that dessert can be light and lower in calories. 

Thus, this week’s recipes:  Dark Chocolate Gelato, and Lemon Sorbetto.  Both the good and bad news was that the Chocolate Gelato was so rich and dense and chocolately, it tasted like frozen chocolate ganache.  And the Lemon Sorbetto?  Divine - like the best fresh frozen lemonade.

For me, the Chocolate Gelato was just too much chocolate and not enough frozen-ness (is that a word?).  I told my family it was so rich, they should cut it with something:  so they went to town topping it with lots of whipped cream, pretzels, and what-have-you.  They disagreed with me:  they all loved it.

An unexpected plus - it was vegan, so my son’s girlfriend could have some as well – the chocolate intensity comes from dark dutched cocoa and dark chocolate, no milk involved.

A couple days later, I made the Lemon Sorbetto in my quest for the cold hit I was looking for.  It was simplicity in itself.  Boil water and sugar for a simple syrup.  Add lemon juice and zest, cool overnight in the fridge.  Churn. Freeze.  Eat.  Feel virtuous.

Dark Chocolate Gelato, adapted from The Perfect Scoop
2 1/4 cups heavy cream
6 Tablespoons Dutch processed cocoa powder
1 cup sugar
Pinch salt
6 oz. unsweetened bar chocolate, chopped
1 cup whole milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Whisk together over medium heat, the cream, cocoa powder, sugar and salt.  Heat until just boiling.  Remove from heat. Whisk in the chopped chocolate until melted.  Add the milk and vanilla.  Blend 1 minute with an immersion blender or regular blender.  Refrigerate overnight.  Freeze in ice cream maker.  Indulge.

Lemon Sorbetto, adapted from The Ciao Bella Book of Gelato and Sorbetto

2 cups water
2 cups sugar
1 cup fresh lemon juice, from about 6 lemons
1 Tablespoon lemon zest

Combine water and sugar in small saucepan, stir to dissolve, heat to boiling.  Cool slightly, add lemon juice and zest.  Refrigerate overnight or at least 4 hours.
Churn in ice cream maker.  At this point the mixture will be too soft to scoop.  Pack into container, and place in freezer for 2 hours or more.  Enjoy. (Cute little sugar lemon decoration optional.)

Both The Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz and The Ciao Bella Book of Gelato and Sorbetto by F.W. Pearce are all around good go-to books for frozen desserts.  The nice thing about finding a recipe in a book versus finding a recipe online, is that it is “browsing enabled” (my term), i.e., it’s easy to find lots of enticing recipes as you leaf through the book, maybe inspiring you along the way to try something you wouldn’t have thought of otherwise.

Find these books at our Library (– as soon as I return them! -) or tons of others on our shelves right now.

Diane Whitman
Reference Librarian,
Split Personality

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