Musical pairing – Bless the Broken Road by Rascal Flatts
This is The Professor, and I’m making my second guest post here on Smith Bites. My last post was after classes ended for Winter Break when I had a little free time, which gave Debra a little respite from her writing. While “free time” isn’t in my vocabulary at this time of year, I really want to share this fabulous and simple gelato recipe that accompanies an equally fabulous celebration.
You see, someone’s having a birthday today . . . Now I’m not sure just how celebratory someone is feeling about growing a year older (and really, how many women get excited about another birthday whizzing by?) but I always make it a celebration. I am fortunate that her birthday is sandwiched between Valentine’s Day and our Wedding Anniversary, so there are plenty of opportunities to shower her with flowers, gifts and romantic meals. Let’s just say it was a whirlwind of emotions that February of 1998, but we’ll save that story for another post.
Debra and I have known each other for thirteen years and yet, it seems as if we’ve never been apart. Throughout the years, birthdays have always been accompanied by a luscious dessert, very often with raspberries for some reason. Early incarnations were a white cake soaked with raspberries and gelatin, raspberry cupcakes, and a pretty spectacular raspberry tiramisu. While this year’s raspberry recipe may be simple, I scored BIG points in the gelato rock star department.
You might say I’m somewhat an ice cream and/or gelato junkie . . . it’s one of my dessert weaknesses . . . so I may . . . or may not . . . have made a few gelato recipes in my day; some with eggs, some with powdered milk – but this one has just the right ratio of cream, fruit and sugar. Like so many Italian dishes, it is the simplicity, quality ingredients and the balance of those ingredients that makes this gelato work. The original Strawberry Gelato recipe comes from Lael and Giuliano Hazan of Educated Palate and I have to give a big shout-out to them – this recipe is perfetto! We made just a few adaptations utilizing the raspberries and blood oranges we had on hand.
So, Happy Birthday to the love of my life, my best friend and soul mate . . . Ti Amo Tantissimo Babe . . .
Preparation time: 10 minutes Total time from start to finish: about 1 hour Makes about 1 quart
- ¾ pound fresh raspberries (Smith Bites Note: It’s best to weigh the fruit, so use a scale here if possible)
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- ¾ cup water 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed blood orange juice (regular orange juice is fine too)
- 1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
- Rinse the berries in cold water.
- Place the berries and the sugar in a food processor and process until liquified. Add the water and orange juice and run the processor until all the ingredients are mixed together well. (Smith Bites Note: I mashed the berry mixture with a wooden spoon rather than using a food processor- leaving more whole fruit as per requested by the birthday girl)
- Whip the cream with a whisk until it begins to thicken and becomes the consistency of buttermilk. Put the cream and the raspberry mixture in a bowl and mix thoroughly.
- Pour the mixture into an ice cream maker and freeze following the manufacturer’s directions.