Unlike the artificial green stuff you see in stores, this pistachio ice cream is the real deal: a pale yellow cream rich with the toasted nuts for which Sicily is famous. The added chocolate makes it irresistible.
Pistachio Ice Cream with Shaved Chocolate
3/4 cup (4 oz./125 g.) unsalted roasted pistachio nuts
6 Tbs. (3 fl. oz./90 ml.) whole milk, plus 1 1/2 cups (12 fl. oz./375 ml.)
1 1/2 cups (12 fl. oz./375 ml.) heavy cream
4 large egg yolks
1 cup (8 oz./250 g.) sugar
Pinch of fine sea salt
1/8 tsp. almond extract (optional)
3 oz. (90 g.) bittersweet chocolate, shaved or finely chopped
Put the pistachios in a food processor and pulse until coarsely chopped. With the motor running, drizzle in the 6 tablespoons (3 fl. oz./90 ml.) milk and process until a creamy paste forms, about 1 minute. Scrape the pistachio paste into a bowl.
In a saucepan over medium heat, combine the 1 1/2 cups (12 fl. oz./375 ml.) milk and the cream and warm until just at the point of simmering. Remove from the heat.
In a bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar and salt until thick and pale yellow. Slowly drizzle in a ladleful of the hot milk mixture, whisking constantly to prevent the eggs from curdling. Whisk in another ladleful of the hot milk mixture, then slowly whisk the egg mixture back into the saucepan. Place over medium-low heat and cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until a custard forms that lightly coats the back of the spoon, about 15 minutes.
Strain the hot custard through a fine-mesh sieve into a heatproof bowl and let cool slightly, then whisk in the pistachio paste. Stir in the almond extract, if using. Place a sheet of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the custard to prevent a skin from forming. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours and up to overnight. Freeze the custard in an ice-cream machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions. When the custard has thickened in the machine, add the chocolate and continue to mix just until well blended. Spoon the gelato into a container with a tight-fitting lid, cover, and freeze until firm, about 4 hours. Divide among dessert bowls to serve. Makes about 1 qt. (1 l.); serves 6.
Recipe from Rustic Italian, by Domenica Marchetti.