Something about the summer heat just makes cold treats that more amazing. I’ve been wanting to work on a completely dairy-free, nut-free (and coconut-free), low-sugar ice “cream” treat for a while. And here it is!
What I love about this gelato is that dark chocolate is really the star. It’s rich, creamy (yes, even without coconut milk or almond milk or heavy cream), and there are no competing flavors (from coconut milk or almond milk). It’s also very low sugar, which you control by using whatever percent cocoa chocolate you want. I personally think that 80%-85% makes the perfect level of sweetness, but depending on where you are in your Paleo journey, you may prefer to make this with bittersweet or with ultra dark chocolate instead.
This is definitely a recipe that you want to break out your favorite high quality chocolate. It needs to be chocolate that you absolutely relish straight, because chocolate is almost the only ingredient in this gelato.
Variations: The variations here are endless. Make it a mocha by using 1 cup hot strong coffee (or even espresso!) to melt the chocolate instead of water. Make it double chocolate by adding chocolate magic shell. Make it a grown-up gelato by replacing an ounce or two of water with rum. Replace the vanilla with peppermint oil for a chocolate-mint version. Or, add chopped cherries and/or walnuts right at the end of the churning.
- 10 oz dark chocolate (bittersweet, 80%, 85% or 90%)
- 2 1/2 cups water (1 cup hot or room temperature and 1 1/2 cups ice water)
- 6 egg yolks
- 2 tsp vanilla
- pinch salt
- Melt the chocolate and 1 cup water (you can either do this in a double boiler on the stovetop or medium power in the microwave). Stir to completely combine.
- Mix the egg yolks together. Temper the yolks: while stirring, add a small ladleful of the hot chocolate mixture to the yolks. Keep stirring and add a second ladleful. Now, add the yolk mixture to the rest of the chocolate and mix thoroughly.
- Place the chocolate mixture in a blender. Add the vanilla and salt. Blend on low and either add the 1 1/2 cups ice water bit by bit, blending for a few seconds in between each addition, or drizzle the ice water through lid by removing the lid insert.
- Place the chocolate mixture in an ice cream maker. Churn, following the manufacturer’s instructions. Once it’s soft-serve consistency, you can put the gelato into a freezer-safe container and freezer for about 2 hours to get that perfect consistency.
- Store in the soft zone of your freezer or remove from the freezer and place in the fridge for about an hour before you serve, or 20 minutes on the kitchen counter.