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The Ciao Bella Book of Gelato and Sorbetto: Bold, Fresh Flavors to Make at Home Hardcover – May 11, 2010

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Editorial Reviews Review

Sample Recipe from The Ciao Bella Book of Gelato and Sorbetto: Classic Chocolate Gelato

Chocolate perfection, pure and simple. Ciao Bella Classic Chocolate Gelato is simply our deep Chocolate Base in its basic form; it stands alone in its sophisticated simplicity or can be used for infinite variations. Try experimenting with spice and different percentages of chocolate--milk chocolate for kids and dark and single-origin chocolates for chocolate connoisseurs. We recommend using a bittersweet chocolate with about 60% cacao for our chocolate recipes, but you could go up or down a bit according to your preference.

Makes about 1 quart of gelato.

2 cups whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate (about 60% cacao), finely chopped
4 large egg yolks
3/4 cup sugar

In a heavy-bottom saucepan, combine the milk and cream. Place over medium-low heat and cook, stirring occasionally so a skin doesn’t form, until tiny bubbles start to form around the edges and the mixture reaches a temperature of 170°F. Turn off the heat and whisk in the cocoa powder. Add the chopped chocolate, and stir or whisk until the chocolate is completely melted and the mixture is smooth.

Meanwhile, in a medium heat-proof bowl, whisk the egg yolks until smooth. Gradually whisk in the sugar until it is well incorporated and the mixture is thick and pale yellow. Temper the egg yolks by very slowly pouring in the hot milk mixture, whisking continuously. Return the custard to the saucepan and place over low heat. Cook, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon, until the custard is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon and it reaches a temperature of 185°F. Do not bring to a boil.

Pour the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer into a clean bowl and cool to room temperature, stirring every 5 minutes or so. To cool the custard quickly, make an ice bath by filling a large bowl with ice and water and placing the bowl with the custard in it; stir the custard until cooled. Once completely cooled, cover and refrigerate until very cold, at least 4 hours or overnight.

Pour the custard into the container of an ice cream machine and churn according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Transfer to an airtight container and freeze for at least 2 hours before serving.


"Pearce and Zecchin are masters of the sophisticated, mysterious, white-hot world of New York gelato. All the secrets to their kingdom are collected in this lively, colorful, informative book."-Adam Platt, Restaurant Critic, New York magazine
“There may be nothing better in the world of frozen comestibles than the original Ciao Bella vanilla gelato. It was great when they started more than 20 years ago and it is great now; just take a peek in my freezer at home....And now, I'll be able to make my own. Yum!”-Mario Batali, chef and author
“As a long-time fan of Ciao Bella gelato and sorbetto, I’m thrilled at the arrival of this beautifully designed and informative book. Once you’ve perused its pages, I’m confident the chilly delights it offers will find a warm welcome in your kitchen.”
 -Michael Romano, Senior Partner and Culinary Director, Union Square Hospitality Group

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Clarkson Potter; 4.11.2010 edition (May 11, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0307464989
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307464989
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 0.7 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (55 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #39,744 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

54 of 56 people found the following review helpful By L. Nelson on August 9, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
My roommates and I discovered Ciao Bella ice cream while shopping at our neighborhood Whole Foods. Though we loved the flavors offered at our Whole Foods, especially the Hazelnut (yum!), we wanted to try some of the other flavors, because the ones we had were so delicious! We found ourselves surfing Ciao Bella's web page and then searching for specific flavors at distance grocery stores.

Then ... everything changed! We discovered this cookbook. If you follow their directions and use fresh ingredients that are ripe/fresh, yours really will turn out just as good as the store bought Ciao Bella gelato. Promise. Why pay $5.00+ for a pint if you can make your own?!

The day the book came I read it cover to cover. There are so many flavors to choose from, not to mention it's inspiring. Fig and port? Yum! Though we certainly haven't made all the recipes, once you master the basic recipe there is very little to change when it comes to adding flavors. I really liked that in the beginning of the book they discussed technique, stressing the importance of temperature, etc. They even explained the difference between different vanillas, which I certainly did not know. As they emphasized, you should feel inspired to try your own variations. After reading different recipes I began to gain a good perspective of when to add more sugar and when not to, etc. The recipes offer inventive combinations that sound delightful. It certainly gets you thinking about what other fruits you can combine to make delicious masterpieces. I certainly felt inspired and have made my own fruit sorbets based loosely on some of the recipes. Everything we've whipped together has turned out fabulous. I can't wait to try the champagne sorbets at New Years!

Definitely worth the price. Did I mention we use this as a coffee table book now? Everyone loves it!
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48 of 50 people found the following review helpful By Gelato....YUM on January 24, 2012
Format: Hardcover
I have all the ice cream books on the market, I have Torrance Kopfer,David Lebovitz,Ben & Jerry's, the list goes on an on. This one is by far my favourite and in second place Torrance Kopfer. It uses fresh natural ingredients, unlike other authors that use corn syrup in some recipes (David Lebovitz). The book does not have hundreds of recipes where one ingredient has changed and a new recipe created. ie instead of vanilla extract use almond extract. You get the picture.

Base recipe is (which I think is perfect)

2 Cups Whole Milk
1 Cup Cream
2/3 Cup Sugar
4 Egg Yolks

The 2/3 sugar is far better than the 3/4 others use.

Gotta run, I have ice cream to make.
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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Ultimate Bookworm on July 7, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I would highly recommend this book. The recipes couldn't be simpler and yet many of them are adventurous and delightfully different. Keep in mind that an ice cream maker is required for all the recipes. We have a very simple, inexpensive model which works just fine. This Fourth of July we chose three sorbettos for a Red, White and Blue theme: Strawberry, Blueberry and Coconut and they were all a huge success with our family! All three were easy to make and came out yummy and refreshing - not too sweet and a perfect finale for our BBQ menu. We can't wait to try everything - each recipe looks great and the pictures are all good enough to eat, too! Get this book - it's definitely worth it!
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Abdulla M. Al Qasim on June 2, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have two other ice cream books, the Ben & Jerry's book (sitting there collecting dust) and The Ultimate Ice Cream Book (was my favorite till I got this), but then I went and bought this marvelous book! I would have given it a six star rating if I could!

First of all, as a book, I love the way the book is put together, printed, and the images used. For me a good cookery book has to be printed on glossy paper, hardcover, and with plenty of eye pleasing pictures! This book scores big on all these fronts!! I love the color combinations used, they scream fun at me!

Secondly, the contents:
I love the brief history introduction regarding ice creams, gelatos, and sorbets at the very beginning of the book!
The recipes in this book are exactly what I look for in frozen desserts! The one thing that I simply adore about this book is that it rarely uses extracts and essences, it teaches you how to use the real deal, like hazelnuts, pistachios and the like!!! Great for making homemade ice creams for the entire family to enjoy!
The recipes always come rich and smooth!! Had some friends over and made them some chocolate gelato and the almost ate the whole batch! Made milk chocolate and hazelnut gelato with a Nutela swirl for the family and that was gone in a couple of days!
The recipes are very easy to follow, especially if you have experience with preparing custards, and the ingredients are fairly easy to find in most supermarkets and there is no need to go to specialty shops.

The book has an abundance of recipes and will give you a better understanding of how to add flavors, like nuts and fruits so that you can experiment and come up with your own versions or even creations, like my milk chocolate gelato with nutela swirl!

This has officially become my favorite gelato / ice cream book in the world!
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Chris H on July 24, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have made a dozen or so of the gelato recipes in this book. All of them have been easy to make and turned out perfectly.
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