Honey Buttermilk Gelato 8.000

T.J. Kirkpatrick for The Washington Post

Oct 20, 2015

Floral and tangy notes make this a wonderful, not-too-sweet accompaniment to fruit desserts.

This recipe calls for an ice cream maker with a gelato setting, which means the final product should have less air churned into it than a standard ice cream; to make this as ice cream, see the VARIATION, below.

Make Ahead: The gelato base must be refrigerated for at least 2 hours and can be refrigerated (in an airtight container) for up to 4 days. The gelato or ice cream can be frozen, packed well in an airtight container, for up to 2 weeks.


When you scale a recipe, keep in mind that cooking times and temperatures, pan sizes and seasonings may be affected, so adjust accordingly. Also, amounts listed in the directions will not reflect the changes made to ingredient amounts.

Tested size: 8 servings; makes 1 quart

  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 3/4 cups plus 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/4 cup acacia honey (may substitute other pale, mildly-flavored honey)
  • Strips of peel from 1 lemon (no pith)
  • 2 extra-large egg yolks
  • 1 1/3 cups buttermilk (1 percent)


Combine the milk, cream, sugar, honey and lemon peel in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, then turn off the heat. Cover and let steep for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, seat a 6-cup container inside a larger bowl filled with ice and water. Place a fine-mesh strainer over the container. Whisk the egg yolks until smooth in a separate large, heatproof bowl (such as a metal mixing bowl).

At the 10-minute mark, uncover the saucepan; turn the heat back on to medium-high so the milk-honey mixture comes to a rolling boil. Gradually pour the mixture into the bowl with the egg yolks, whisking constantly as you work to form a gelato base that's evenly blended. Immediately pour it through the fine-mesh strainer (into the container), using a ladle or spatula to push all of the liquid through. Discard the solids.

Use a clean spatula to stir the gelato base until it has cooled to below room temperature. Once cool, add the buttermilk, stirring to incorporate. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours (and up to 4 days).

Working in two batches as needed, pour the chilled gelato base into your gelato maker; churn according to the manufacturer's directions. The gelato at this point will have a soft-serve consistency. Transfer to a container with a tight-fitting lid, packing the gelato without any air pockets. Freeze for at least 2 hours before serving (or up to 2 weeks).

VARIATION: To make honey buttermilk ice cream, the amount of milk should be 1 cup, and the amount of heavy cream should be 1 1/4 cups.

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Recipe Source

From Alex Levin, executive pastry chef at Osteria Morini in Navy Yard.

Tested by Bonnie S. Benwick.

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