Strawberry Gelato...Egg-free. Because of all the rain we've been having this year, my strawberry patch has done quite well. And even though my strawberries ripened later than normal, I was thrilled to finally harvest a couple of bowlfuls this past week. I was really surprised to get so much, as the previous years weren't so bountiful. Granted the strawberries have multiplied and have practically taken over my garden:). I always seem to struggle with the thought of cooking any garden-fresh fruit or vegetable if I don't have to.
We love to eat the strawberries and savor the taste without adding or taking away from their natural goodness. But I really wanted to make something special with a few of them...I figured I had some to spare. I thought about making a fresh berry tart, or a cheesecake, or a sweet bread...but I finally decided to make a gelato. I had come across a rather intriguing recipe that used no eggs and I really wanted to try it. The recipe used cornstarch to thicken the gelato base, and I was really curious how that would play out in the final recipe. Would it make it creamy?...
I really wanted the gelato to be creamy and definitely not icy. I've made plenty of ice creams that do not use an egg custard base...and most of them come out icy. This was different...creamy and oh-so delicious! LOVED it!
The only issue I have with this recipe, is that it doesn't make enough:)...had to make another batch (using cherries instead and some shaved chocolate). I am thinking this recipe can be made with other types of fruits...definitely worth trying, as I loved how creamy and easy this was to make. Hope you enjoy...
Note: While this recipe uses cornstarch as a thickener, I am thinking it can probably be replaced with another form of thickener..maybe tapioca starch, or arrowroot. Not sure though...as I haven't yet tried either of them. I did read that arrowroot when mixed with dairy products, can cause it to get slimy. Now, I don't know how that would turn out when frozen... But if you do try it, I would love to know how that works in this recipe... or if you've used a different thickener.
You will need: adapted from Bon Appetit via Epicurious
3/4 cup sugar
1 TBS cornstarch
1 cup whole milk
3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
2 1/4 cups sliced strawberries
2 TBS pomegranate juice, optional
1-2 TBS Chambord*
* you can use a bit of vanilla instead
1. Wash, hull, and slice strawberries. Puree sliced strawberries in a food processor. Strain (I didn't bother, as I like the seeds...and honestly did not wan't to lose any part of my strawberries:))... and set aside.
2. To a medium sauce pan, add sugar and cornstarch. Stir to combine.
3. Add milk and cream. Whisk to combine.
4. Whisk gelato mixture over medium heat until it thickens and starts to bubble....about 5 minutes.
5. Cool gelato base over an ice bath and add pureed strawberries...and Chambord, pomegranate juice or vanilla, if using.
6. Chill 3 hours or overnight( I left mine for 24 hours in the fridge).
7. Process in ice cream maker....you can always add some shaved/chopped chocolate towards the end of the churning process.
8. Freeze for at least 3 hours before serving.