Simona at Briciole is hosting our Summer edition of Novel Food. You can see All of my Novel Food Posts since 2007. . . that's a lot of reading (and a lot of eating)
I have found the perfect book for my lazy summer reading this year. 'Beyond the Pasta' by Mark Leslie.
Mark Leslie is a self proclaimed foodie. Every year he travels to Italy and 'lives to eat his way through every plate of pasta and cone of gelato'. He shares these experiences in his novel 'Beyond the Pasta'. He is from Alabama and even has a blog . . . (I think we might be soul sisters of a sort) Buonissima!
He does a beautiful job of filling this book with the flavors and scents of Italy . . . the Italy I love. The story of his time in Italy is told through trips to the market, adventures in the kitchen, meals and evenings with friends and limoncello. This a novel and a recipe book all rolled into one delicious read.
This Blog Post where Mark talks about gelato in Italy, is a perfect example of 'our' favorite gelateria in Rome. But ~ I think I loved it first! They have the most unique gelatos, I can remember going once 3 times in one day. This is SOO funny, because this gelateria is less than a block from 'my' hotel in Rome.
Which inspires my recipe for this edition of Novel Food. Basil Gelato
1/3 cup sugar (+1/3 cup divided)
3 tsp lemon juice
1cup fresh basil
2 cups milk
1 1/4 cup whipping cream
6 egg yolks
Place 1/3 cup of sugar and 1/3 cup of water in saucepan, bring to boil, stirring to dissolve sugar.
Set side to cool. When cool, pour into a blender, add the lemon juice and basil. Blend until smooth.
In a small saucepan heat milk, cream, and extra sugar over medium heat, stirring constantly.
Cook for a few minutes or until the sugar dissolves and the milk is just about to boil.
Remove from heat.
Whisk the egg yolks in a large bowl. Slowly incorporate the eggs into the warmed milk mixture, and stir constantly over medium heat for about 8 to 10 minutes or until mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon. Do not allow to boil. Remove from the heat and pour through a colander. Stir the basil syrup into the custard. Pour into an ice cream maker and freeze.
Serve with fresh strawberries and a drizzle of excellent Balsamic Vinegar.Mark's novel has gotten great reviews.
My favorite review of all . . . "Alabama and Italy- What a delightful and delicious combination ~Fannie Flagg"
You know Fannie has been a friend of the family for years! I couldn't agree more. If we never get the chance to meet in Alabama, maybe we will run into each other over a gelato in Rome.