The more elegant big brother of mint choc chip ice cream, mint stracciatella gelato is a firm favourite in gelaterias across Italy. The shards of chocolate are created by dripping melted chocolate into nearly-churned mint gelato such that it freezes on contact and is broken up (shredded) by the paddle of the ice cream machine.
This recipe from Jacob Kenedy’s Gelupo Gelato , a colourful cookbook sharing recipes for gelatos, sorbets, sherbets, granitas, semifreddos and more, gleaned from over a decade of running the popular London gelateria of the same name.
Read our review of Gelupo Gelato by Jacob Kenedy, for more about the book.
For the base bianca (yields 800ml)
- 130 g granulated or caster sugar 40g skimmed milk powder
- Stabiliser: 1 level teaspoon locust bean gum powder; or 2 tablespoons starch (arrowroot or cornflour)
- 640 ml whole milk
- 40 g glucose (aka dextrose) syrup or powder, or light runny honey
For the mint stracciatella gelato
- 200 g mint, with stalks (2 really big bunches)
- 150 ml double cream
- 50 g dextrose powder or icing sugar
- 45 g dark chocolate (70%), chopped
- 15 g cocoa butter or coconut oil
• Substitute the mint with coriander, then use milk chocolate in place of dark.
• Substitute the mint with half the amount in basil and use white chocolate in place of dark.
• Omit the chocolate altogether – mint gelato without stracciatella is arguably just as nice, only different.
To make the base bianca
In a small bowl, stir the sugar, milk powder and stabiliser powder together thoroughly.
Put the milk and glucose or runny honey in a saucepan. Heat gently until barely simmering.
Pour the contents of the bowl into the warm milk mixture in a steady stream, stirring as you go. Continue to stir until the mixture just returns to the boil, then remove from the heat.
Cover the pan and leave the base to cool to room or fridge temperature. (It will keep for up to 5 days in the fridge if allowed to cool, then refrigerated immediately.)
To make the mint stracciatella gelato
Have ready a large pan of boiling water and a bowl of iced water.
Blanch the mint for literally 10 seconds in the boiling water (stalks and all), then drain and immediately refresh in the iced water.
Drain the mint again and squeeze it dry.
Blend the mint finely with the cream, dextrose powder or icing sugar and the base bianca, until it looks like a green paint.
Strain the mixture through a sieve into a bowl, pressing to get all the goodness out. (Discard the contents of the sieve.)
Transfer the verdant liquid to your ice-cream machine and churn until fully firm.
While the gelato is churning, gently melt together the chocolate and cocoa butter or coconut oil in a bowl set over a small pan of simmering water. (Or, use a microwave on low.) Allow the melted chocolate mixture to cool almost to room temperature.
When the gelato is as firm as you’d normally say it was ready, but certainly before it balls up on the paddle, pour in the chocolate in a steady stream with the ice-cream machine still running. The paddle will break the chocolate mixture into shards as it solidifies. A slower pour will yield finer strands; faster will be chunkier.
Before serving, put the mint stracciatella in the freezer for half an hour or so to firm up. If it has been stored in the freezer longer and is too firm, allow it to soften in the fridge until scoopable.
This recipe is a lovely one to make using home-grown mint, but of course it works just as well if you buy your herbs from the supermarket or grocer’s.
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Kavey Eats received a review copy of Gelupo Gelato by Jacob Kenedy from Bloomsbury Publishing. Recipe shared with permission.