Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Black sesame gelato

During the weekend, I had invited my aunt and uncle over for dinner, which called for some gelato / ice cream as dessert. Ever since my success with David Lebovitz's pistachio gelato, I had wanted to use the same receipe with a different nut or seed. As I love gooey black sesame, I decided to use the same receipe with roasted black sesame seeds.

This picture was taken immediately after the gelato had been churned. We were greeted with this black beauty, which I thought looked quite enticing, even though it looked a little lumpy as the mixture touching the edges of the metal container froze up more than the mixture in the middle. 

 My uncle and aunt commented that it tasted not bad. My uncle had two bowls of it. He also commented that its texture was like Nestum (?!). 

Upon tasting the gelato myself, I felt that it could have done well with less sugar still, and that it could have been nicer if it was thicker or denser in black sesame seeds. I was looking for the same thick gooey sesame seed texture when eating tang yuan, and this gelato went only two-thirds of the way to achieving that. Well, that will be for round two!

Black sesame gelato
Adapted from David Lebovitz's pistachio gelato receipe

6 cups (1.5 litres) whole milk
2/3 cup sugar*
4 tablespoons cornstarch (also known as corn flour)
400g roasted black sesame seeds**
a few drops of lime juice

* I found the final product sweet, and could have done with slightly less than 2/3 cup sugar.
** I would have preferred the final product to be more dense, in terms of the black sesame, and I think that the amount of milk used can accommodate 500-600g black sesame powder, for a really thick slurry.

1. Make a slurry by mixing 3/4 cup of the milk with the cornstarch, mixing until the starch is dissolved and the mixture is smooth.

2. Heat the rest of the milk in a saucepan with the sugar.

3. When it almost starts to boil, stir in the cornstarch mixture and cook at gentle simmer for 3 minutes, stirring constantly.

4. Remove from heat, scrape into a bowl.

5. Grind the roasted black sesame seeds until a fine powder.

6. Whisk in the black sesame powder and add a few drops of lime (or lemon, or orange) juice until smooth.

7. Chill the mixture thoroughly, preferably overnight.

8. Freeze the gelato in your ice cream machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

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