Not known for his patience, watchdog Fidget was particularly edgy on this occasion. In the cartoon kitchen they had worked devotedly on making the smoothest, most velvety, sumptuous, indulgent ice cream. A shame that Fidget won’t now allow the machine time to do its churning…
Gelato al rum / Rum and sultana ice cream
Based on a classic recipe (Stefano Caffarri – Cucchiaio d’Argento), Trota used 4 egg yolks, 130g granulated sugar, 250g full cream milk, 250g double cream, a vanilla pod (optional – omitted in the rum variety, but used if custard is mixed with, for example, chopped dark chocolate to make stracciatella).
Start, the day before, with the ‘flavouring’: you will need 100g golden sultanas, soaked overnight in about 70ml rum (enough to cover). Set aside.
In a heatproof bowl (pyrex is ideal) add the sugar a little at a time to the egg yolks and whisk continuously to obtain a fluffy mousse. Still whisking, add – again, a little at a time – the milk, which you will have previously warmed. Cook gently in a bain-marie (over a pan of simmering water, with the bowl not touching the water) for 15min or so. It is important that the custard cooks gently: we don’t want scrambled eggs…
Take off the heat and add the cream (cool from the fridge), and mix well. Drain the sultanas (plump and juicy with rum); put half in the food processor and whizz to a fine pulp. Mix well into the custard. The remaining sultanas you can use to decorate, or, if you prefer, add to the custard.
At this point, either use your ice cream machine (following the manufacturer’s instructions), or put your mixture in a plastic container with a lid and place in the freezer. As the custard solidifies, mix it every couple of hours or so to ensure a smooth consistency. You will probably need to do this 3 or 4 times until the custard is solid and…essentially turned into ice cream!
It might take a few hours for the ice cream to set properly, so make it the day before you are planning to serve. Oh, and keep away impatient creatures like Fidget.