Violeta is somewhere 30,000 feet in the air, encapsulated in some long metallic tube with wings. She is on her way back to Buenos Aires for the holidays. I will be flying out to join her on Sunday evening, where we will be for christmas and new years with family and friends. Buenos Aires is such a vibrant city, with so much art, music, design, good food, good wine, and of course, amazing gelato. I will be studying with an old maestro heladero who makes, hands down, the most amazing gelato I have ever eaten. I am going with some specific questions, like how to perfect the art of sambayon gelato – a super rich gelato made with eggs, egg yolks and marsala wine, but mostly to spend a couple of days with him to pick up all that I can. He has been making true old-school gelato for the last 50 years and has a wealth of passion and knowledge.
So, while we are away, Dimas will be running things at the shop and the farmer’s markets. We will be spinning a number of delectable flavors for the holidays:
VALRHONA CHOCOLATE HOMEMADE PEPPERMINT PATTY – Our Valrhona dark chocolate gelato has been compared to the likes of smoking a cigar. It is so rich and full of earthy, nutty, tobacco notes, definately an adult chocolate. We make a peppermint patty by boiling sugar, cream, milk, butter and cream of tartar to about 236 degrees to achieve a creamy soft ball sugar dough. We then mix in some organic peppermint oil, form little disks and finally submerge them in tempered dark chocolate. When the dark chocolate gelato spills from the batch freezer, we fold in the peppermint patty. The result is a rich dark chocolate gelato being uplifted and refreshed by the creamy peppermint patties.
QUAKER VALLEY ORCHARDS EGGNOG – Huge free-range eggs from Freddie Schulteis at Quaker Valley Orchards. We exchange pints of our gelato for dozens of her eggs at the Dupont Farmers Market. Their is such joy bartering our gelato for fresh farmer goods. We whisk and heat the eggs, add a bit of cream, nutmeg, cinnamon and brandy, then spin it cold. It is full body, rich, spicy, decadent. There’s no way you can go back to eggnog in a cup after eating this.
CLEMENTINE – Sublte, sweet, tart, sophisticated. One of my favorite citrus fruits, along with Sicilian Blood Orange, which is coming soon.
POMEGRANATE – We split them in half one by one, and proceed to beat them on the back until we knock out all the seeds. We then puree and strain to get the precious juice. The result is a smooth, tangy, almost nutty flavor, so refreshing to the palate.
So, we are off, once again. Getting away from the cold for a little bit and warming our bones in the South American sun. Tonight is ripe with anticipation, probably more for Violeta than for me right now. We hope everyone has a beautiful holiday season, full of futbol, families and presidental candidate debates. We will be back in early January to continue working at the art of artisan gelato, a journey that becomes richer and richer every moment.