If you don’t have an ice cream machine, electric or otherwise, chill your gelato base mixture well in a stainless steel bowl in the freezer. When partially frozen, beat the mixture with a wire whisk until it’s creamy. Return the bowl to the freezer and repeat the whisking process once or twice more until the gelato has a smooth, luscious texture.–Pamela Sheldon Johns
LC What To Sip Alongside Note
This recipe sorta makes us daydream of sitting beneath a pear tree in the Italian countryside, nibbling fresh pears and hazelnuts while sipping Amaretto. May as well pour yourself a little Amaretto to go on the side of this ice cream to help get you in that not-a-care-in-the-world mindset.
Amaretto-Poached Pear Gelato
3 H, 35 M
Makes 1 1/2 quarts
Special Equipment: Ice cream maker
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In a large saucepan over medium heat, combine the pear or apple juice, amaretto, and 1/2 cup sugar, stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Add the pears and poach (that is to say, gently simmer the pears), turning occasionally, until tender but not falling apart, 35 to 40 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pears to a plate.
Continue to simmer the cooking liquid until it’s reduced somewhat and slightly thickened but not quite syrup-like, about 20 minutes. Set aside to cool. Stir in the cream. Cover and refrigerate the pears and liquid separately until chilled through.
In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the milk and salt and heat until bubbles form around the edges of the pan. Remove from the heat and cover to keep warm.
In a blender or food processor, blend the remaining 2/3 cup sugar and egg yolks until very thick and smooth. With the machine running, gradually add the hot milk in a slow, steady stream. Return the mixture to the saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the mixture thickens slightly and coats the back of the spoon, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove the pan from heat and place it in a bowl of ice water, stirring for 2 minutes to help cool the custard mixture. Cover and refrigerate the custard mixture for at least 2 hours, or until thoroughly chilled.
Coarsely chop 6 of the pear halves; refrigerate the remaining 6 for serving. In a blender or food processor, puree the chilled custard and the chopped pears until smooth. Freeze in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
To serve, arrange a pear half on each plate. Reheat the reduced cooking liquid. Scoop some gelato onto each pear half, spoon some of the reduced cooking liquid over the gelato, and garnish with the chopped hazelnuts.
Amaretto-Poached Pear Gelato Recipe © 2008 Pamela Sheldon Johns. Photo © 2008 Joyce Oudkerk Pool. All rights reserved. All materials used with permission.