November 18, 2011

Limoncello Gelato

Limoncello, a true Italian treat, has a special meaning for me. I am certainly not Italian, but was introduced to authentic Italian food as a child. Our summer holidays every year were spent at the beach staying at a sweet little hotel right on the sand's edge. Room service was provided by the Italian restaurant below, called 'Lindoni's'. We learned to decipher the complicated menu and began tasting some very new flavours, 'umming' and 'ahhing' at truffles and porcini mushroom.

Every year, my grandparents and my family would toast my dad and my grandad's birthdays at this gorgeous authentic Italian restaurant at Noosa on the Sunshine Coast. We would enjoy garlic and tomato bruschetta, creamy veal and mushroom tortellini and grilled Moretan Bay bugs. As the evening drew to a close, the two dad's would start having some shots of Limoncello. My grandad's jubiliant face would get rosy and his laugh would become more exhuberant. It was such happy times and became a treasured tradition. While at that time, I didn't indulge in the pastime, the mere concept of the drink reminds me of those happy nights together.

If you are not ready to drink the alcohol unmasked, try this delicious sorbet recipe. I found this courtesy of Marie Claire - always such stylish recipes!

3 lemons, juiced and rind, finely grated, plus 2-3 lemons extra for serving
190g icing sugar
450ml softened low-fat vanilla ice cream
3 tablespoons limoncello, chilled

Place lemon juice and zest into a bowl, stir in sugar and leave for 30 minutes. In another bowl, whip cream and limoncello until soft peaks form, then beat into lemon mixture. Place mix into a container and freeze overnight. To make limoncello gelato wedges, halve extra lemons lengthways, scoop out flesh, fill with gelato then freeze. Cut segments in half again lengthways before serving.

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