A scoop into a cup or a cone is all it takes to get you hooked on this delicious dessert. As the name suggests, chocolate lovers are in for a treat. And, no, chocolate gelato is not reserved for summer; it’s an all-year-round dessert.
Hats down to Italy for giving us gelatos – a welcome variation of the frozen desserts (read, ice cream) that we grew up knowing.
When it comes to versatile ingredients, chocolate is top of the list. Drinks, cakes, ice creams, gelatos, etc. — it’s center stage everywhere. The percentage of cocoa chocolate you use and other flavors you add can also create different flavors to please distinct taste buds.
There are several chocolate flavors. Some make better gelatos than others.
Milk chocolate has to be one of the most famous eating chocolate. It’s creamier, sweeter, and softer, with a lighter color than dark chocolates. The main ingredients in a bar of milk chocolate are chocolate liquor (semi-liquid paste of ground cocoa nibs), cocoa butter, sugar, and milk.
It’s called milk chocolate because it has at least 12% milk. The milk used in making it can be powdered, liquid, condensed, or a combination of two or more of these. The dairy gives it a lighter color, and it’s favorite eating chocolate for many because it melts fast.
Dark chocolate is chocolate in its purest form. It has a high concentration of cocoa solids. Unlike milk chocolate, it has no added milk. It’s known as unsweetened or bitter chocolate, although sometimes it’s sweetened to make it more palatable.
Dark chocolate has the most health benefits. It’s high in iron, magnesium, zinc, copper, and phosphorus. So consumption of dark chocolate can help people with iron deficiency anemia, improve bone health, and improve sleep.
The percentage of cocoa concentration varies in different dark chocolates. Any chocolate containing between 50-90% cocoa solids is considered dark.
You can use any dark chocolate for your gelato, but we find 70% cocoa our favorite concentration to make the perfect chocolate gelato.
While some may argue that white chocolate isn’t chocolate, it has its loyal fans. It has no cocoa solids. Instead, it’s made with cocoa butter, sugar, milk, vanilla, or other flavors.
The high sugar concentration (60%) makes it the least healthy of the three. However, prudent consumption should be acceptable.
As the name suggests, it’s whitish (pale ivory) in color. It gets the color from cocoa butter — vegetable oil derived from cocoa beans.
What is Chocolate Gelato Made Of?
A few accessible ingredients are necessary to make gelato. The common ones are
- Refined sugar
- Skimmed milk powder
In making chocolate gelato, other ingredients include:
- Dark chocolate pieces
- Egg yolks
Egg yolks can be controversial in this recipe as authentic Sicilian gelato uses cornstarch instead for thickening. But you can use the yolks if you have them, and the result will just be as tasty. In fact, Northern Italians use eggs and sometimes cream in their gelatos, as is common in American ice cream.
You can make chocolate gelato at home with or without an ice cream maker. We prefer the home ice cream maker because it pumps just the right amount of air into the gelato, leaving it dark but not too dark.
What is the Difference Between Chocolate Ice Cream and Chocolate Gelato?
Both ice cream and gelato are frozen desserts. But there are a few differences.
Traditional ice cream is creamier because it uses cream, while authentic gelato uses whole milk. Ice cream is also fluffier because much air gets into the mixture during processing.
Gelato is the healthier sister since it has less butterfat, and yet it has more intense flavors.
The table below summarizes the key differences between ice cream and gelato.
|Ingredients||Includes cream and egg yolks||Use milk instead of cream. Some recipes don’t use eggs.|
|Texture||Creamy and airy||Denser and more elastic|
|Butterfat Content||Contain 10-25% butterfat||Have only 4-9% butterfat|
|Serving||Served at 6-10°F||Served at 10-20°F|
The obvious similarity is that chocolate ice cream and chocolate gelato are chocolate flavored.
Frozen desserts are great for taking a mid-day break, winding down a meal, or passing the time. The healthier and flavor-intense gelatos offer variety.
At Bambina Blue, our gelato and ice cream chef takes care at every step to produce the most refreshing and satisfying desserts in NYC. That’s why we guarantee that here’s where you’ll find the best ice cream NYC. As we respect tradition, you get a spade even with a cone.