Is Italian style gelato achievable with standard home ice cream makers and home freezers


I've not had much success trying to make Italian style gelato at home though French style ice cream works very well.

I'm using the Cuisinart ICE-100 which comes with both an ice cream and a gelato paddle. The gelato paddle definitely does produce more dense results with less air though the Cuisinart doesn't allow you to control the churning speed (like most home ice cream makers).

My main problem is that if I make a litre of ice cream and store it in the home freezer it will freeze so solidly that it can't be scooped at all – it can just about be cut with some effort.

Any recommendations, tips, recipe books? I don't mind put in some more effort at the cooking stage and allowing some time in the fridge at the serving stage for the gelato to come up to the right serving temperature.

Best Answer

Since you say French-style ice cream works fine, but the gelato is freezing rock hard, I suspect the problem may simply be the serving temperature. Gelato needs to be served at a warmer temperature than ice cream. Unfortunately the temperatures I've found are pretty variable (some say 5F, some say 10-20F), but everyone consistently says gelato needs a higher temperature than ice cream.

So just try taking it out of the freezer 15 minutes before you want to serve.

If you don't want to do that, then actual gelato recipes probably won't work well, and you'll have to modify them. You can try some of the usual tricks for softening ice cream: add alcohol, sugar, fat, or additives like guar gum or xanthan gum. But keep in mind that they may cause you to stray a bit from the original gelato flavor or texture!