Gelato differs from American ice cream in that it has lower butterfat and sugar content. It also has a more dense texture with more intense flavor. The author of this particular recipe notes that it isn't totally authentic because real gelato doesn't use whipping cream, but this is "the best way to re-create it at home with the kind of ice cream makers most people can afford to have in their own kitchens." For more detailed instructions with plenty of photos, definitely check out her original article.
• 2 egg yolks, lightly beaten
• 1/2 cup sugar
• 1 cup milk
• 2 3.5-oz high-quality chocolate bars (I used Lindt 50% Cocoa Bars)
• 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
• 1 cup whipping cream
• Mix-in of your choice (optional)
Put the beaten egg yolks, sugar, and milk into a small saucepan, then turn the heat onto a relatively low setting. Cook this mixture, stirring regularly until it is slightly thickened and starts to coat the spoon and sides of the pan as you stir. Remove from heat.
As the milk/sugar/egg mixture is heating up, break up the chocolate bars into pieces and put the pieces in a microwave-safe dish. Melt slowly in the microwave on a medium power setting in 30 second intervals, stirring frequently, until the chocolate is melted.
Add the vanilla and whipping cream to the melted chocolate and mix it thoroughly. The chilled cream may cause some of the chocolate to solidify. If so, briefly return the mixture to the microwave to maintain a smooth texture. Pour the melted chocolate mixture into the saucepan with the milk/sugar/egg and mix until well-blended.
Pour the mixture into a container and cover with plastic wrap so that the plastic actually touches the liquid. This will keep a skin from forming in the cooling process. Put the mixture in the refrigerator and cool it to at least room temperature, then freeze it according to your ice cream maker’s instructions.
Eat it straight out of the machine if you like it soft, or let it set in the freezer for a couple of hours if you want it more firm. Store the finished gelato in an air-tight container.