This gelato is a new entry for Food Nirvana. Think of it as a frozen dessert that captures the intense taste of fresh red raspberries in a very nice gelato. Why gelato instead of ice cream? Well, Food Nirvana has lots of nice ice cream recipes and gelato preparations are "bright" in fruit taste, thus interestingly different. And, the simple fact is you can make Red Raspberry ice cream using the recipe below, simply by switching the ratio of cream to milk and skipping the lemon juice. We've done it both ways and the results are terrific.
I decided to try making this gelato because I now grow my own red raspberries. Another very good reason is that my sweetheart, Peggy, loves raspberries. Smart move, right? Yes, and I was completely successful. I am most pleased with this recipe.
I noted while researching gelato recipes that virtually all of them create a cooked custard with egg yolks. While there is nothing specifically wrong with that method I learned a long time ago that the simple ice cream base used by Ben and Jerry in their homemade ice cream book creates an ice cream that is equal to any ice cream I have ever tasted made with a custard base. Thus, I decided to vary completely from the standard gelato recipes and use a modified base, simply using a lot more milk and less cream than what is used when making ice cream.
A lot of gelato and ice cream recipes that use red raspberries fail to eliminate the seeds. I find that less than acceptable ... a weak response that produces an inferior product. Even Ben and Jerry drop the ball on this one!
Thus, I use a Food Mill attachment with my Kitchen-Aid mixer that partially separates juice and pulp from the seeds. I then use the seeds and remaining pulp attached to the seeds in a second procedure that is trivially simple and very effective. Specifically, I mix the pulp and seed mixture with about a cup of milk and process the mixture using the regular beater of the electric mixer and a regular mixing bowl. You can run the mixer for five minutes on medium speed. That will produce significant separation of the pulp from the seeds without breaking the seeds. At that point you simply pour the mixture into a fine sieve and collect the liquid, pressing lightly with a wooden spoon to get the last of the pulp. The seeds are then discarded.
If you don't have a mixer attachment (Food Mill) as described above you can simply microwave a plastic wrap covered dish of the raspberries just until they come to a boil. That will break the bonds to the seeds and make juice extraction very easy with just a fine sieve and a wooden spoon. You will, however, still need to use the wooden spoon to press the bulk of the pulp through the sieve. But note that the flavor is in the juice, so if you are making gelato you don't even have to use the pulp.
Okay, enough preliminaries. Let's get on with it ...
Ingredients: (Makes about 1½ quarts of gelato)
1 cup of heavy cream
2 cups of milk
2 extra large or jumbo eggs
1 1/4 cups of sugar
2 or 3 cups of fresh red raspberries
1 tbsp. of fresh lemon juice
1 tsp. of natural vanilla extract
Process the red raspberries as described above in the introduction to create a juice and pulp mixture with no seeds.
Use the electric mixer to beat the eggs on medium speed for about one minute, then add the sugar and beat for two minutes on medium speed.
Add all the remaining ingredients and the raspberry juice and pulp mixture and mix for three minutes.
Transfer the mixture to a gelato (or ice cream) maker and proceed to make the gelato. Once it is stiff, transfer the completed gelato to a two quart storage container. Put the container into the deep freeze for two to four hours to finish hardening it.
When serving the gelato you may want to let it partially thaw for perhaps five to ten minutes, but be observant and then scoop it from the storage container and serve it fairly quickly as it can melt faster than ice cream.